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AhleSunnah Library ( ) 

A Glossary of 
Islamic Terms 

Aisha Bewley 

Ta-Ha Publishers 

1 Wynne Road 
London SW9 OBB 

© 1418 / 1998 Aisha Bewley 

Published in Rabi Al-Awwal 1419 AH/July 1998 CE by 

Ta-Ha Publishers Ltd. 
1 Wynne Road 
London SW9 0BB 



Typesetting by Bookwork, Norwich 

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in 
any retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, 
mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior written 
permission of the publishers, except for passages for review purposes. 

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data 

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. 

ISBN 1 897940 72 6 (paper) 
ISBN 1897940 78 5 (case) 

Printed and Bound by Deluxe Printers, London, 

Table of Contents 

Preface iii 

General and Historical Terms 1 

General Terms 3 

Units of Weight and Measurement 26 

Arabic Expressions 28 

Historical Terms 32 

Some Notable Historians 5 1 

Some Early Historical Sources 56 

Eschatology 60 

Terms relating to Morals and Ethics 66 

Specific Topics 71 

The Qur'an 

Terms related to Qur'anic recitation or tafsir 73 

Prophets, places and people mentioned in the Qur'an 81 

Qur'anic commentators imufassiruri) 87 

Some Classical Tafsirs of the Qur'an 92 

Qira'at of the Qur'an 93 

Hadith 95 

Hadith Terminology 97 

Some Important people in the field of Hadith 105 

Major Collections of Hadith 112 

Traditional Ranking of Hadith Collections 115 


General Terms used in Fiqh 116 

Usui al-Fiqh terms 131 

Business Terms 143 

Inheritance Terms 152 

Hajj Terms 155 

Some Important Fuqaha' 161 

The Maliki Madhhab 161 

Some Major Maliki fuqaha '■ 161 

Some Important Maliki texts 1 65 

The Hanafi Madhhab 166 

Some Major HanzB. fuqaha ' 167 

Some Hanafi Texts 168 

The Shafi'i Madhhab 170 

Some Major Shafi'i fuqaha" 170 

Some Shafi'i Texts 173 

The Hanbali Madhhab 174 

Some Major Hanbali y^^a' 174 

Some Hanbali Texts 176 

Other Madhhabs 177 

Terms used in Kalam and Philosophy 179 

Some Major figures in Kalam and 

early Muslim philosophy 196 

Terms used in Sufism 203 

Some major Tariqas 229 

Some famous Sufi texts 232 

Some famous Sufis 235 

Index of Subjects 251 

Index of People and Books 279 


The inspiration for this book came about largely as the result of the 
necessity of having to compile glossaries for a number of books. This 
resulted in the gradual growth of a basic glossary over the course of 
time. Eventually it seemed sensible to compile a glossary which would 
be more or less comprehensive. Of course, given the nature of language, 
a completely comprehensive glossary is impossible, and there will 
inevitably be some oversights and omissions. If there are some glaring 
omissions, that is entirely my fault and perhaps could be rectified in 
future editions, Allah willing. 

At the inspired suggestion of Hajj Idris Mears, rather than simply 
arranging the book as an alphabetical dictionary, I have divided the book 
into various key topics. This will enable the reader to approach the book 
in two ways. First there is an alphabetical index at the back of the book 
by which a particular word can be located, rather in the way one uses a 
thesaurus. But if someone is interested in a particular field, such as 
hadith or philosophy, then he or she can go straight to that section and 
find the relevant material all in one place. This will also enable others to 
have an overall view of the topic and perhaps glimpse the depths of 
Islamic knowledge. Occasionally a word will be repeated in several sec- 
tions for this reason. Sometimes, of course, the definition will vary 
slightly because of a particular usage which pertains to an individual 

The sections which deal with specific topics also mention some 
major figures and books related to the topics being dealt with. Again, 
this is by no means comprehensive, so if the reader finds that some 
notable individual or book is omitted, that is probably due to my over- 
sight and is by no means intended to denigrate that person or book. 

I hope that this will prove useful to all those engaged in studying the 
vast corpus of Islamic knowledge and perhaps inspire some to look into 
areas of knowledge which they have not yet had the opportunity to study. 

Finally, my thanks are due to Hajj Ahmad Thomson for his help in 
proofreading the text as well as offering many valuable suggestions. 

Aisha Bewley 
Spring, 1418/1998 



= a 






































short vowels: 

— = a 

— = u 

JL = t 

Ji = z 

t = 

^ = f 

^ = q 

^i = k 

J = i 

^ = m 

6 = n 

6 = h 

j = w 

45 = y 

S = t 

General and 
Historical Terms 

It has been related that the Prophet said, may Allah bless him and grant 
him peace, "Dust be upon the face of the person who does not bless me 
when I am mentioned in his presence." (Muslim) 

Since this is primarily a reference book, it would be impractical to ask 
Allah's blessings and peace on the Prophet Muhammad and on his fami- 
ly and Companions every time they are mentioned in the text. 
Accordingly this general supplication is made here and now: may the 
blessings and peace of Allah be upon the Prophet Muhammad and his 
family and Companions until the Last Day. Amin. 

It has been related that the Prophet said, may Allah bless him and grant 
him peace, "If anyone blesses me in a book or letter, the angels continue 
to ask forgiveness for him as long as my name is on it." (at-Tabarani) 

General Terms 

'aba: a sleeveless garment resembling a mantle, open in the front. 

Adha: see Id al-Adha. 

adhan: the call to prayer. 

adib: litterateur, writer, essayist. It denotes someone who is charac- 
terised by adab, meaning either someone well-disciplined, or, more 
frequently, someone skilled in literary accomplishments. 

'ahd: covenant, compact, pact or contract. Dhu 'ahd denotes someone 
who has a contract with the Muslims (i.e. a dhimmi). "Wilaya 'ahd" 
means succession to the khalifate by virtue of a covenant with the 
preceding khalif . 

ahl: House, family, kin. 

Ahl al-Bayt: "the People of the House," the family of the Prophet. 

Ahl adh-dhimma: "People of the Pact", protected non-Muslim subjects. 
(See dhimma). 

Ahl al-Hadith: a term used to denote the conservative traditionalists, 
especially at the time of the Mu'tazilite/Ash'arite conflict during the 
'Abbasid era. 

Ahl al-Kitab: "the People of the Book", principally the Jews and 
Christians whose religions are based on the Divine Books revealed 
to Mtisa and 'Isa; a term also used to refer to any other group who 
claim to be following a Book revealed prior to the Qur'an. 

ahl al-hall wa'l-'aqd: "the people of loosing and binding," i.e. the 
'ulama" (scholars), leaders and army commanders who make bind- 
ing decisions for the community. 

Ahl al-Harb: "the people of war", non-Muslims living beyond the 
Muslim frontier. 

Ahl al-Madlna: the people of Madina, particularly the first three gener- 
ations: the Companions, the Tabi'un, and the Tabi'u't-Tabi'in. 

Ahl as-Sufiyya: the people of tasawwufoi Sufism. 

a'imma: the plural of imam. 


'ajami: a non-Arab, often in reference to Persians. 

'ajwa: an excellent quality of date. 

Akhira: the Next World, what is on the other side of death, the 

Hereafter, the dimension of existence after this world. 
'alim (plural 'ulama'): a man of knowledge, a scholar, especially in the 

sciences of Islam. 
ama: a female slave. Thus the female version of " 'Abdullah" is 

aman: guarantee of safety, safe-conduct. 
Amin: "Ameen", a compound of verb and noun meaning "Answer our 

prayer" or "So be it". 
amir: the one who commands, the source of authority in a situation; a 

military commander. 
'amma: common, public, general. 
amr (plural awamir, umilr): command, matter, affair. 
al-amr bi'1-ma'ruf wa'n-nahy 'an al-munkar: promotion of good and 

prevention of evil. This is a duty for all Muslims which is prescribed 

in the Qur'an. 
'anaza: a spear-headed stick, longer than a staff and shorter than a spear. 

The Prophet used one for a sutra in the prayer. 
anbiya': the plural of nabi. 
'aql: intellect, the faculty of reason. 
arak: a tree from which siwak (tooth brush) is made. 
ard: the earth. The opposite is samawat, "the heavens". 
arkan: (the plural of rukn), used for the five indispensable pillars of 

Islam which are: the shahada, the salat, the zakat, the fast of 

Ramadan and the Hajj. 
'Ashura': the 10th day of Muharram, the first month of the Muslim 

lunar calendar. It is considered a highly desirable day to fast. 
al-Asma' al-Husna: the Most Beautiful Names, meaning the Ninety- 
nine Names of Allah. 
'Asr: the mid-afternoon prayer. It is also the name of Sura 103 of the 

'ata': something which is given; a gift; a soldier's stipend. 


'awamir: certain snakes living in houses which are actually jinn. It is 
the plural of 'amir. 

'awra: the private parts, the parts of the person which it is indecent to 
expose in public. For a man, it is what is between the navel and the 
knee, and for a free woman, all except the face and hands. 

aya(t): a verse of the Qur'an. It literally means "sign" and also refers to 
the signs that one sees in Creation. (Sometimes written as aya, 
which is a more faithful representation of the Arabic.) The plural is 

Ayat oil ah: "Sign of Allah", a honorific title of high-ranking Shi'ite reli- 
gious authorities. 

badiya: desert or semi-arid environment. 

badr (plural budur)\ the full moon. 

BamVI-Asfar: a term used for the Byzantines/Romans. Asfar is meant 
to be a name for "Rum" (Roman) or Rum, the son of Esau. Some 
state that the Roman emperors were called the 'sons of Sufar' and 
that the Israelites say that this is Sophar, son of Eliphaz son of Esau. 
It may mean the Edomites. 

Banu Isra'il: the tribe of Israel, the children or descendants of Israel or 

baraka: blessing, any good which is bestowed by Allah, and especially 
that which increases, a subtle beneficient spiritual energy which can 
flow through things or people. 

Barqa: Cyrenaica in modern Libya. 

basmala: the expression "In the name of Allah, the All-Merciful, the 

ba'th: the quickening or bringing the dead back to life at the end of the 
world. Ba'th also means sending forth with a Message. 

bat ul: ascetic and chaste, detached from worldly things and devoted to 
Allah. It is a title used for both Fatima (the Prophet's daughter) and 
Mary am. 

bay 'a: literally it means the striking together of the hands of two con- 
tracting parties to ratify a contract; hence the act of swearing alle- 

Bayram: Turkish name for 'id. 

Bayt al-Haram: "the Sacred House", the Ka'ba. 


bedug: a drum used in Indonesia to call people to the prayer in forested 

areas where the voice does not carry. 
al-Burda: lit. "the Cloak" , meaning the mantle of the Prophet, the name 

of a popular poem written in praise of the Prophet by al-Busiri. 
busr: partially ripe dates. 
Calendar, Muslim: a lunar calendar whose months are: Muharram, 

Safar, Rabi' al-Awwal, Rabi' ath-Thanl, Jumada al-Ula, Jumada al- 

Akhira, Rajab, Sha'ban, Ramadan, Shawwal, Dhu'l-Qa'da, Dhu'l- 

Hijja. The lunar year is approximately eleven days shorter than the 

solar year. 
daff: tambourine. 
Dajjal: the false Messiah whose appearance marks the imminent end of 

the world. The root in Arabic means "to deceive, cheat, take in". 
dakka (sometimes dikka): a platform to which a staircase leads in the 

damma: the Arabic vowel u. 
da'wa: inviting or calling people to worship Allah by following the 

Messenger of Allah. 
Deen: see Din. 

dhablha (plural dhaba'ih): an animal slaughtered for food. 

dhanb (plural dhuniib): wrong action, sin. 

dhimma: obligation or contract, in particular a treaty of protection for 

non-Muslims living in Muslim territory. 
dhimml: a non-Muslim living under the protection of Muslim rule on 

payment of xhejizya. 
Dhu'l-Hijja: the twelfth month of the Muslim lunar calendar in which 

the Hajj takes place. 
dhu mahram: a male, whom a woman can never marry because of close 

relationship (e.g. a brother, a father, an uncle etc.); or her own hus- 
Dhu'l-Qa'da: the eleventh month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 
Dhuhr: see Zuhr. 
Din: often written Deen, the life-transaction, lit. the debt between two 

parties, in this usage between the Creator and created. The plural is 



du'a': making supplication to Allah. 

duluk ash-shams: early afternoon, the sun's declining from the meridi- 

Dull a: forenoon, in particular the voluntary morning prayer. 

Eid: see 'Id. 

fajir (plural fujjar or fajara): a reprobate; someone who behaves 
immorally or sinfully; someone who disobeys the commands of 
Allah and commits immoral actions. 

Fajr: dawn, daybreak. There is the "false dawn" which rises without 
spreading out, and the"true dawn" in which the light rises and 
spreads. It also means the dawn prayer. Among the Malikis, it desig- 
nates the two sunna rak'ats before the obligatory Subh prayer while 
others use Fajr and Subh interchangeably. 

falah: success, prosperity, the lasting attainment of that which one 

faqih (plural fitqaha'): a man learned in the knowledge offiqh who by 
virtue of his knowledge can give a legal judgement. 

fard (plural fard' id): obligatory, an obligatory act of worship or practice 
of the Din as defined by the SharVa. 

fatha: the Arabic vowel a. 

Fatiha: "the Opener," the first sura of the Qur'an. 

fatwa (plural fatdwd): an authoritative statement on a point of law. 

fez: crimson brimless head-covering worn in the later Ottoman Empire 
and in some successor-states, outlawed in Turkey by Kemal Ataturk. 

fiqh: the science of the application of the SharVa. A practitioner or 
expert in fiqh is called afaqih. 

Firdaws: Paradise, one of the highest parts of the Garden. 

fitna (plural fitan): civil strife, sedition, schism, trial, temptation. 

Fitr: see 'Id al-Fitr. 

fitra: the first nature, the natural, primal condition of mankind in harmo- 
ny with nature. 

Follower: see Tabi'un. 

furusiya: excellent horsemanship. 

fusha: classical Arabic; pure, eloquent Arabic. 


ghazr. someone taking part in a ghazwa or military expedition against 

ghazwa (plural ghazawat): raid, a military expedition, especially a 
desert raid. 

ghulam: a young man, often a slave. 

ghusl: full ritual bath. 

hadd (plural hudUd): Allah's boundary limits for the lawful and unlaw- 
ful. The hadd punishments are specific fixed penalties laid down by 
Allah for specified crimes. 

hadith: reported speech of the Prophet. 

hadlth qudsi: those words of Allah on the tongue of His Prophet which 
are not part of the Revelation of the Qur'an. 

Hajar al-Aswad: the Black Stone in the Ka'ba. 

hajib: a chamberlain, door-keeper. 

Hajj: the annual pilgrimage to Makka which is one of the five pillars of 

halal: lawful in the Shari'a. 

halaqa: a circle of people gathered for the purpose of study. 

halif (plural hulaju'): confederate, ally. 

hammam: bath-house. 

hanif (pi. hunafd'y. one who possesses the true religion innately. 

al-Hanifiya: the religion of Ibrahim, the primordial religion of tawhid 
and sincerity to Allah. 

hanut: an aromatic compound of camphor, reed perfume and red and 
white sandalwood used for perfuming shrouds. 

haram: unlawful in the Shari'a. 

harba: a short spear, javelin. 

ha rim: the harem, something forbidden to those who do not have per- 
mission to enter, particularly women's apartments; it is also used to 
denote parts of land withdrawn from cultivation because they are 
needed to gain access to other land or property. 

hasanat: good deeds, acts of obedience to Allah. The opposite is 
sayyi'at. The singular is hasana. 

hashiya: gloss, supercommentary on a text. Hashiya means "margin", 
and this commentary was written in the margins of a book. 



Hawd: the watering-place or Basin of the Prophet in the Next World, 

whose drink will refresh those who have crossed the Sirat before 

entering the Garden. 
hays: dates mixed with butter, sometimes with sawiq added. 
hi day a: guidance. 
hija': satire. 
hijab: a partition which separates two things; a curtain; in modern times 

used to describe a form of women's dress. 
Hijaz: the region along the western seaboard of Arabia in which Makka, 

Madina, Jeddah and Ta'if are situated. 
Hijra: emigration in the way of Allah. Islamic dating begins with the 

Hijra of the Prophet Muhammad from Makka to Madina in 622 CE. 
hilal: new moon; crescent moon. 
hilm: forbearance, self-restraint. 

hizb: a part of people; a set portion of the Qur'an for recitation; a sixti- 
eth of the Qur' an. 
huda: guidance. 
hudud: the plural of hadd. 
hunafa': the plural of hanif. 
hurr: free. 
hurriya: freedom. 
huruf : letters (singular harf). 
'ibada: act of worship. 
Iblis: the personal name of the Devil. He is also called Shaytan or the 

"enemy of Allah". 
ibn as-sabll: traveller, wayfarer. It Uterally means "son of the road". 
'Id al-Adha: the Hajj festival which takes places on the 10th of the 

month of Dhu'l-Hijja. 
'Id al-Fitr: the festival at the end of the fast of Ramadan on the 1st of 

the month of Shawwal. 
idhkhir: a kind of sweet rush well-known for its good smell and found 

in the Hijaz. 
idhn: permission. 
'ifrlt: a powerful sort of jinn; a demon or imp. 


iftar: breaking the fast. 

ihsan: absolute sincerity to Allah in oneself: it is to worship Allah as 
though you were seeing Him because He sees you. 

ijaza: a certification, by a teacher that a particular student was qualified 
to teach a particular subject or to transmit a specific book or collec- 
tion of traditions. 

ijma': consensus, particularly the consensus of the people of knowledge 
among the Muslims on matters of fiqh. 

ijtihad: to struggle, to exercise personal judgement in legal matters. 

ikhlas: sincerity, pure unadulterated genuineness. 

ikhwa: brothers. The singular is akh. Another plural which is often used 
is ikhwan. 

Imam: (1) Muslim religious or political leader; (2) one of the succession 
of Muslim leaders, beginning with 'All, regarded as legitimate by 
the Shi'a; (3) leader of Muslim congregational worship. The plural 
is a'imma. 

'imama (plural l ama'im): turban. 

iman: belief, faith, acceptance of Allah and His Messenger. Belief con- 
sists of believing in Allah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers, 
the Last Day, the Garden and the Fire, and that everything, both 
good and bad, is by the decree of Allah. 

'Isha': the night prayer. 

Iskandar: Alexander the Great. 

Islam: submission to the will of Allah, the way of life embodied by all 
the Prophets, given its final form in the guidance brought by the 
Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. The 
five pillars of Islam are: the affirmation of the shahada, performing 
the prayer or salat, paying the zakat, fasting the month of Ramadan, 
and performing the Hajj once in a lifetime if you are able to do so. 

Isra': the Night Journey of the Prophet to Jerusalem, which took place 
on 27 Rajab. 

istikhara: a prayer performed by someone who has not made up his 
mind in the hopes of being inspired to make a wise decision. 

izar: a piece of cloth used as a waist-wrapper both by men and women. 

jabarlya: "compulsion", tyranny. 



jadldl: modern, modernist. 

Jahannam: Hell. 

Jahillya: the Time of Ignorance before the coming of Islam. 

Jahim: Hellfire. 

jalbab: a long loose fitting garment worn by the Arabs. 

jails (plural julasa'): a companion with whom one sits. 

jama'a: the main body of the Muslim Community; also designates the 

group prayer. 
jami' (plural jawami'): Friday mosque, a mosque where Jumu'a is held; 

sometimes used for any mosque. 
janaza: also written as jindza: the dead person, the funeral bier; the 

funeral prayer. 
Janna: the Garden, Paradise. 
jariya: female slave. 
jawami* al-kalim: It is said of the Prophet that he spoke "jawami' al- 

kalim", meaning comprehensive but concise language, language 

which conveys many meanings in few words. 
Jibrfl: or Jibra'fl, the angel Gabriel who brought the revelation of the 

Qur'an to the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant 

him peace. 
jihad: struggle, particularly fighting in the way of Allah to establish 

jinn: inhabitants of the heavens and the earth made of smokeless fire 

who are usually invisible. 
jizya: a protection tax payable by non-Muslims as a tribute to a Muslim 

ruler, traditionally 4 dinars or 40 dirhams per year. 
jubba: a cloak. 

julasa': colleagues. The singular is jalis. 

Jumada al-Akhira: the sixth month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 
Jumada al-Ula: the fifth month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 
Jumu'a: the day of gathering, Friday, and particularly the Jumu 'a prayer 

which is performed instead of Zuhr by those who attend it. Friday 

only acquired this name with the coming of Islam. Before that it was 

known as al- 'Aruba. 



jund: army, band, group, wing of the army. It also denotes a military 
district. For instance, the five districts or ajndd of Greater Syria 
were Damascus, Hims, Qinnasrin, Jordan, and Palestine. 

kafir (plural kafirun or kuffar): a person who rejects Allah and His 
Messenger. The opposite is believer or mu'min. 

kali ma: literally the "word" = the shahada. 

kasra: the Arabic vowel i. 

katm: a plant used for dyeing hair. 

khalif: (the Arabic is khalifa, plural khulafa"); Caliph. Someone who 
stands in for someone else, in this case the leader of the Muslim 
community, although it is sometimes used for the deputy of some- 
one in a higher position of authority. 

khaluq: a kind of thick yellowy perfume used by women. 

khamisa: A black woollen square blanket with borders at each end. 

khamr: wine; and by extension any intoxicant which affects a person's 
faculty of thought and his ability to perform the prayer properly. 

khassa: special, elite, private; closest friends. 

khatlb: a speaker or orator; the one who delivers the khutba. 

khazin (plural khazana): a treasurer, storekeeper, guard. 

al-Khidr: or al-Khadir, "the green one," whose journey with Musa is 
mentioned in the Qur'an 18:60-82. He may or may not be a Prophet, 
and appears often to people. 

khil'a: robe of honour which is bestowed. 

khilafa: the caliphate or khalifate, governance by means of a khalif. 

khimar: a veil or yashmaq which covers the head and lower part of the 
face but leaves the eyes exposed. 

khuff: leather socks. 

khumra: a small mat just sufficient for the face and the hands (on pros- 
trating during prayers). 

khums: the fifth taken from the booty which is given to the ruler for dis- 

khusuf: lunar eclipse. 

khutba: a speech, and in particular a standing speech given by the Imam 
before the Jumu 'a prayer and after the two 'Id prayers. 



kinaya: an allusive form of speech which does not clearly disclose the 
speaker's intention. 

kiswa: the huge embroidered black and gold cloth that drapes the Ka'ba. 

Kitab: book, particularly the Book of Allah, the Qur'an. 

kitabi: Jew or Christian, one of the People of the Book. 

kitman: concealment of information. 

kuhl: kohl, antimony powder used both as decoration and a medicine for 
the eyes. 

kuffar: plural of kafir. 

kufiya: white or colored headcloth worn by men in Arabia and parts of 
the Fertile Crescent. 

kufr: disbelief, to cover up the truth, to reject. Allah and refuse to believe 
that Muhammad is His Messenger. 

kunya: a respectful but intimate way of addressing people as "the father 
of so-and-so" or "the mother of so-and-so." 

kusuf : solar eclipse. 

lahd: a grave, about five feet deep in which a niche is dug for the body 
into the side facing qibla so that the body is protected by the over- 

lawh: board, slate, wooden tablet used for writing, especially in schools. 

Al-Lawh al-Mahfuz: the Preserved Tablet in the Unseen which is also 
referred to as the Umm al-Kitab, the place of recording what will be; 
the repository of Destiny. 

Laylat al-Bara'a: the night preceding the 15th of Sha'ban (and hence 
also Nisf Sha'ban or Middle of Sha'ban), the Night of Quittancy, 
also called Shabi Bardt in India and Iran. In a hadlth, it says that 
Allah descends to the lowest heaven on that night and calls on peo- 
ple to grant them forgiveness. 

madhhab: a school of law founded on the opinion of afaqih. The four 
main schools now are Hanafi, Maliki, Shaft 'I and Hanball. There are 
also madhhabs which have ceased to exist: the Awza'i, Zahiri, Jariri 
(from Ibn Jarlr at-Tabari) and the madhhab of Sufyan ath-Thawri. 
The Shi 'a also designate their fiqh as the Imami or 'Ja'fari mad- 
hhab' after Ja'far as-Sadiq. Among the Shi 'a, there are also the 
Aktibaris and the Usulis. 



madrasa (plural madaris); a traditional place of study and learning. 

maghfira: forgiveness, 

Maghrib: the sunset prayer. The Maghrib also designates the Muslim 
territories in the northwest of Africa and is the Arabic name for 

mahkama: court of justice, tribunal. 

mahram: a male relative with whom marriage is forbidden. (See dhu 

ma'ida: table; the name of Sura 5 of the Qur'an. 

majlis (plural majdlis): sitting, session, gathering of notables in a 
Bedouin tent, audience of a shaykh, assembly, ruling council, parlia- 

makruh: abominable, reprehensible but not unlawful in the SharVa. 

mala': council, senate, 

malik: king. 

tnanaqib: virtues, glorious deeds, feats; a type of biography, 

manara: minaret. 

mandub: commendable, recommended. 

maqsura: a stall or compartment erected in the mosque for the ruler, 
usually near the mihrab. 

maristan: hospital, 

marthiya: elegy, funeral oration, dirge. 

ma*ruf : well-known, generally accepted, beneficial, courtesy. 

mashayikh: shaykhs, A plural of shaykh. 

mashhad: martyrium; a place where a martyr died or is buried; a reli- 
gious shrine celebrating such a person or his tomb. 

mashruba: an attic room; a roofed vestibule. 

mashura: consulting with experts, 

al-MasIh ad-Dajjal: the anti-Messiah, "Dajjar means a liar and great 

maslhi (plural maslhiyyun)'. Christian. 

masjid (plural masajid): mosque, lit. a place of sajda or prostration. 

Masjid-ai-Aqsa: the great mosque in Jerusalem. 

Masjid al-Jama'a: central mosque. 



masnun: sunna, referring to an act which the Prophet's early communi- 
ty performed regularly. 

ma'sum: infallible or protected from committing wrong actions. 

ma'uda: in pre-Islamic times, the unwanted female child who was 
buried alive. The practice was forbidden in the Qur'an in 81:8. 

maw'iza: sermon, admonition. 

mawlid: or mawlud, a time, place and celebration of the birth of anyone, 
especially that of the Prophet, who was born on the 12th Rata"' al- 
Awwal/30th August 570 CE. 

mawt: death. 

may sir: game of chance, gambling. It is unlawful in Islam. 

mihrab: the prayer niche, a recess in a mosque indicating the direction 
of qibla. 

Mih raj an: Magian festival at the autumn equinox. 

mikhsara: staff or whip held in the hand with which a speaker makes 
gestures; a ruler's rod. 

minbar: steps on which the Imam stands to deliver the khutba, or ser- 
mon, on Friday. 

mir: from the Arabic amir> a title of respect used in India and Iran for 
descendants of the Prophet. 

Mi'raj: the ascension of the Prophet Muhammad from Jerusalem to the 
seven heavens which took place on the 27th of the month of Rajab. 

mirbad: a place where dates are dried. 

miskin (plural masdkin): very poor, wretched, indigent, those who do 
not have anything and have to resort to begging to be able to live. 

miswak: another term for the siwdk. 

mlthaq: solemn covenant, treaty, compact. 

mizan: balance, scale - symbol of harmony in creation and also the 
scales of the Final Reckoning. 

mu'addib: schoolmaster. 

miradhdhin: someone who calls the adhan or call to prayer. 

mu'allim: teacher, master of a craft. 

mubarak: blessed by Allah, imbued with baraka. 

mubashslurat: lit. "good news", good dreams. 

mufti: someone qualified to give a legal opinion or fatwa. 



Muharram: the first month of the Muslim lunar year. 

mujaddid: rennovater, renewer. 

mujahid (plural mujahidun): a person who takes part in jihad. 

mujazziz; a qd% a learned man who reads foot and hand marks. 

mu'jiza: an evidentiary miracle given to a Prophet to prove his prophet- 

mukhabarat: secret police. 

mulay: lit. "my master", from mawla, a title used in Morocco for 
sharifs, descendants of the Prophet. 

mu'min (plural mu'minun)'. a believer, someone who possesses iman, 
who trusts in Allah. 

munafiq (plural mundfiqun): a hypocrite, someone who outwardly pro- 
fesses Islam on the tongue, but inwardly rejects Allah and His 

munawarra: "the radiant", "the illuminated", used to describe Madina. 

muqatila: soldiers, fighters. 

musad'afih: weak and oppressed people. 

musalla: place for praying. 'Id prayers are normally held outside the 
mosque at a musalla, 

mushaf (plural masahif): a copy of the Quran. 

mushrik (plural mushrikun): someone who commits shirt 

muslim: someone who follows the way of Islam, not abandoning what is 
obligatory, keeping within the bounds set by Allah, and following 
the Sunna as much as possible. 

mutatawi'a: those who enforce obedience, vigilantes who enforce the 
prayer and beat people for moral laxity. 

muttaqun: pious and righteous persons who fear Allah much (abstain 
from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden) and 
love Allah much (perform all kinds of good deeds which He has 

muwahhid: unifier. 

nabl (plural anbiya'): a Prophet. 

nabidh: a drink made by soaking grapes, raisins, dates, etc, in water 
without allowing them to ferment to the point of becoming intoxi- 
cating. If it does become intoxicating, it is still called nabidh. 



nafila (plural nawafil): supererogatory or voluntary act of worship, 

nahw: grammar. 

nahy: prohibition. 

namaz: Persian word for prayer. 

naql: transmission. 

Nan the Fire, Hell 

nas: mankind. Also the name of Sura 114 of the Qur'an. 

nasab: lineage, descent. 

Nasara: (singular nasrant) "Nazarenes", Christians. In modern times the 

term 'masihV is usually used for a Christian. 
nawadir: anecdotes. 

Nawruz: Persian New Year, a Magian festival at the spring equinox. 
nikah: marriage, 

niqab: veil which covers the entire face, including the eyes. 
ruW: women. Also the name of Sura 4 of the Qur'an. 
niyya: intention. 
nubuwa: prophethood. 
nur (plural anwar): light. 
pasha: a title of high rank, like a mayor. 
payambar: a Persian/Turkish word meaning Prophet. 
purdah: a Persian/Urdu word for the seclusion of women, 
qabr (plural qubur): grave. 
qadi (plural quda): a judge, qualified to judge all matters in accordance 

with the SharVa and to dispense and enforce legal punishments. 
qadi al-qudat: the chief qadi in charge of all other qadis. 
qadlb: staff, rod. 
qa'idun: literally, "those sitting down", people who remain inactive and 

do not actively fight. 
qa'if: physiognomist, 
qal'a: citadel, fortress. 
qalam: pen. 
qalansuwa: tall cone-shaped hat worn in Abbasid times by important 

people with a turban wrapped around it. This is the qalansuwa 



tawila or danniya. The short qalansuwa was shaped like a skull-cap 

or fez with a turban wrapped around it. 
qalib: a well. 
qamar: the moon. (Badr denotes the full moon and hilal the crescent 

qamis: tunic (from Latin camisa). 
qasida: ode, poem. 
qasr (plural qusiir)\ stronghold. 
qattat: a person who conveys information from someone to another with 

the intention of causing harm and enmity between them- 
qibla: the direction faced in the prayer which is towards the Ka'ba in 

Makka. The first qibla had been Jerusalem and so the early Muslims 

had prayed towards two qiblas, a quality which is sometimes used to 

describe the fact that they became Muslim early on. 
qiram: thin figured woollen curtain. 
qiyam bi'1-layl: standing in prayer during the night. 
al-Qiyama: the arising of people at the Resurrection. 
Qubba as-Sakhra: Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. 
quda: the plural of qadi. 
al-Quds: Jerusalem. 
Qur'an: the Holy Book, the Living Miracle, revealed from Allah as a 

guidance to mankind via the angel Jibrll to the Prophet Muhammad, 

may Allah bless him and grant him peace. The Revelation began in 

610 and continued until shortly before the death of the Prophet in 

qurban: sacrifice. 

ra'aya; "flock", meaning citizens, subjects. 
Rabb: Lord, master. RabbWAlarmn means "the Lord of the worlds", 

the Lord in the Seen and the Unseen and at all levels of existence. 
Rabl* al-Awwal: the third month of the Muslim calendar. 
Rabi* ath-Thani: the fourth month of the Muslim calendar. 
rahib: a monk. 

Rajab: the seventh month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 
rajaz: "trembling", a type of poetry with a particular metre which is 

easy on the ear and easily provokes emotions. 


rak'a(t): a unit of the prayer consisting of a series of standings, bowing, 
prostrations and sittings. 

Ramadan: the month of fasting, the ninth month in the Muslim lunar 

raqa'iq: emotive stories or kadfths which provoke feelings and emo- 

rasul (plural rusul): a 'Messenger,' a Prophet who has been given a 
revealed Book by Allah. Every Messenger is a Prophet, but not 
every Prophet is a Messenger. 

Rasulu'llah: the Messenger of Allah. 

Rawda: lit. Meadow, the area of the Prophet's mosque between his 
grave and minbar, based on what the Prophet said: "What is between 
my house and my minbar is one of the meadows of the Garden." 

rida ? : a piece of cloth (sheet etc.) worn around the upper part of the 

risala: message, also a treatise or letter. 

roza: the Persian word for sawm, fasting. 

ruh (plural arwah): the soul, vital spirit. 

rukn (plural arkan): essential ingredient; pillar. 

al-rukn al-varnam: the Yemeni corner of the Ka'ba, facing south 
towards Yemen, 

ruqya: Divine Speech recited as a means of curing disease. (It is a kind 
of treatment, i.e. to recite Surat al-Fatiha or any other sura of the 
Qur'an and then blow one's breath with saliva over a sick person's 

rusul: the plural of rasul. 

ru'ya: vision, dream. 

sa'dan: thorny plant suitable for grazing animals. 

sadaqa: charitable giving in the Cause of Allah. 

Safar: the second month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 

Sahaba: the Companions of the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless 
him and grant him peace. If a Muslim has seen the Prophet, or 
talked to him, at least once when the Prophet was alive, he is called 
Sahabl The plural form of SahabT is Sahaba or Ashab. The word 



Sahdba al-Kiram includes all those great people each of whom has 

seen the Prophet at least once. 
Sahabi: a Muslim who saw the Prophet at least once; a Companion. 
sahib (plural ashab): lit. companion, also a graduate student in a 

Sahifa (plural suhuf): portion of writing, page, a book revealed to a 

sabur: or sukur, the early morning meal taken before first light when 

sajjada: prayer rug. 

Salaf: the early generations of the Muslims. 
Salafi: derived from Salaf, used to describe the early generations of the 

Muslims, and adopted by a modern group of Muslims led by al- 

Afghani and Muhammad * Abduh at the turn of the century, 
sala(t): the prayer, particularly the five daily obligatory prayers. One of 

the pillars of Islam, 
salih (plural salihuri)'. righteous, a spiritually developed person, some- 
one who is in the right place at the right time doing the right thing. 
sama' (plural samawat): Heaven. The opposite is ard, earth. 
saqifa: a roofed porch where the Muslims in Madina met after the death 

of the Prophet to chose their first khalifa. 
sariya: a small army-unit sent by the Prophet on jihad, without his par- 
ticipation in it. 
sawiq: a mush made of wheat or barley (also with sugar and dates), 
sawm: or siyam^ fasting from food, drink and sexual intercourse from 

dawn to sunset, particularly for the month of Ramadan which is one 

of the pillars of Islam. 
sawm ad-dahr: uninterrupted fasting. 
sayyid: a descendant of the Prophet; also master. 
Sayyid al-Anbiya' wa'1-Mursalin: "the Master of the Prophets and the 

Messengers", Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him 

Sha'ban: the eighth month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 
shahada: bearing witness, particularly bearing witness that there is no 

god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. It is 



one of the pillars of Islam. It is also used for legal testimony in a 

court of law. It also means martyrdom. 
shahid (plural shuhud): a witness, someone who testifies. 
shahid (plural shuhada '): a martyr who dies fighting in the Cause of 

Shama'il: "good qualities", especially the characteristics of the Prophet. 
shaqq: a simple grave, about five feet deep. 
sharh: commentary. 
Shari'a: lit. road, the legal modality of a people based on the Revelation 

of their Prophet. The final Shari'a is that of Islam. 
sharif: a descendant of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him 

peace, through Fatima and 'AH. 
Shawwal: the tenth month of the Muslim lunar calendar. 
shaykh (plural shuyukh): someone who is over fifty, or the patriarch of 

the tribe or family, a title of respect. 
Shaykh al-Islam: a title of respect dating from the time of the Buyids. 
shay tan (plural shaydtin): a devil, particularly Iblis, one of thejwiw. 
Shi' a: lit. a party or faction, specifically the party who claim that 'All 

should have succeeded the Prophet as the first khalif and that the 

leadership of the Muslims rightfully belongs to his descendant. 
shirk: the unforgiveable wrong action of worshipping something or 

someone other than Allah or associating something or someone as a 

partner with Him. 
shuhada': the plural of shahid. 
shuhud: the plural of shahid. 

shura: consultation. Also the title of Sura 42 of the Qur'an. 
shurta: urban police. 

shuruq: sunrise, when the sun is fully over the horizon. 
shuyukh: plural of shaykh. 
sihr: magic. 
sirat al-mustaqfm: "the straight path" of Islam, which leads to the 

siwak: a small stick, usually from the arak tree, whose tip is softened 

and used for cleaning the teeth. 
Subh: the dawn prayer. 



Suffa: a verandah attached to the Prophet's Mosque where the poor 

Muslims used to sleep. 
suhuf: pages or manuscripts. 
suhur: see sahiir. 
sukun: stillness; a diacritic mark which means no vowel sound after a 

sulh: reconciliation, or comprehensive peace settlement. 
sultan: an abstract noun meaning power, especially that of government. 

It has come to designate a king or ruler who governs by virtue of his 

sunan: plural of surma; also collections of hadlths. 
Sunna: the customary practice of a person or group of people. It has 

come to refer almost exclusively to the practice of the Messenger of 

Allah and to the first generation of Muslims. 
Sunni: the main body of Muslims, the AM as-Sunna wa'l-Jama'a, who 

recognise and accept the Khulafa' ar-Rashiditn, the first four khal- 

ta'a: obedience to Allah. (The opposite is ma f siya, disobedience.) 
ta'addf: violation of trust. 

Tabaqat: chronicles, biographies arranged according to generations. 
Tabi'un: the Followers, the second generation of the early Muslims who 

did not meet the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and 

grant him peace, but who learned the Din of Islam from his 

Tabi'u't-Tabi'In: "Followers of the Followers", the generation after the 

Tabi'un who did not meet any of the Companions. 
tafsir: commentary and explanation of the meanings of the Qur'an. 
taghut: covers a wide range of meanings: It means anything worshipped 

other than the Real God (Allah), i.e. all the false deities. It may be 

Shaytan, devils, idols, stones, sun, stars, angels, human beings e.g. 

Jesus or other Messengers of Allah, who were falsely worshipped 

and taken as objects of worship. 
tahajjud: voluntary prayers performed at night between 'Isha* and Fajr, 
tahara: purification, purity. 



tahnlk: the Islamic customary process of chewing a piece of date and 

putting a part of its juice in a newborn child's mouth and calling the 

adhan softly in the child's ears, etc. 
tahrif : distortion, modification of an original text; what has happened to 

the original teachings of Mtisa and isa. 
takfir: to declare that someone is a kafir or unbeliever. 
talaq: divorce. 
talqin: instruction. This is the term used for instructing the dead in what 

to say in the grave, when questioned by Munkar and Nakir. 
tamattu' : a form of hajj. 
tanwin: nunnation (gramm.) 
tanzil: "sending down", revelation. 
taqiya: concealment of one's views to escape persecution. 
taqwa: awe or fear of Allah, which inspires a person to be on guard 

against wrong action and eager for actions which please Him. 
ta'rikh: era, chronology, history. 
tarjuman: translator. 
tasawwuf: Sufism. 
tashdld: doubled consonant. 
tatawwu': voluntary; supererogatory. 
ta'ffl: negation, the concept of denying Allah all attributes. 
tawassul: to seek the assistance of a person of virtue in praying to Allah. 
tawba: returning to correct action after error, turning away from wrong 

action to Allah and asking His forgiveness. 
tawfiq: success given by Allah. 
tawhld: the doctrine of Divine Unity. 
tayammum: purification for prayer with clean dust, earth, or stone, 

when water for ghusl or wudu' is either unavailable or would be 

detrimental to health. 
taylasan: a hooded stole. It was especially worn by the qadls and 

fuqaha\ hence qadis were sometimes known as the arbab ai- 

taydlisa, 'the people of the stoles'. 
ta'zrya: Shi'ite performance of 'mourning' for the death of Husayn. 
tha'r: blood revenge. 



tharid: a dish of bread, meat and broth, reported to be a favourite dish of 

the Prophet. 
thawab: reward. Muslims will be rewarded in the Hereafter for all their 

pious actions which they have done in the world. The rewards which 

Muslims will be given in the Hereafter are called thawab. 
thayyiba: a woman who has been married. 
tibb: medicine. 
tu'am: foodstuffs. 
'ulama': plural of f alim\ scholars, 
lmVl-amr: those in command and those with authority. 
'ulum: plural of 'Urn. 

umana': those who are faithful and trustworthy, the plural of amin. 
Umm al-MiTminln: lit. "Mother of the Believers", an honorary title 

given to the wives of the Prophet. 
Umm al-Qur 5 an: "Mother of the Qur'an", the opening sura of the 

Qur'an which is called al-Fatiha. Also said- to be its source in the 

umm walad: a slavegirl who has born her master's child. She cannot be 

sold and becomes free upon her master's death. The child is free 

from birth. 
Umma: the body of Muslims as one distinct Community. 
umm! (plural ummiyun): unlettered, untaught. 
*umra: the lesser pilgrimage to the Ka'ba in Makka performed at any 

time of the year. 
usul: (singular asl): fundamentals; essentials. 
usul ad-Din: meaning 'Urn usul ad~DTn, the science of the fundamental 

principles of the Din as distinct from other belief systems; the 

science of the tenets of belief. It can also be designated as "al-fiqh 

al-akbar'\ "the greatest understanding", 
wahy: Revelation. 

wajib: a necessary part of the SharVa. 

wala ? : the tie of clientage established between a freed slave and the per- 
son who frees him, whereby the freed slave becomes integrated into 

the family of that person. (See mawla.) 
wall ma: a feast accompanying a wedding. 



wars: a kind of yellow dye and perfume. 

waslla: something which makes something else take place. The High 

Place with Allah reserved for the Prophet on the Last Day. 
waswas: the whispering which is done by Shaytan when he tries to 

make people deviate, 
wisal: fasting for more than one day continuously. 
wudu': ritual washing to be pure for the prayer. 
Yahudi: a Jew. 

yasir: slight, insignificant, immaterial. 
yatim: orphan. 

zalim: a person who is unjust and oppressive, a tyrant 
Zuhr: the midday prayer. 
zulm: injustice, iniquity, tyranny. 


Units of Weight and Measurement 

awaq: plural of uqfyya, a measurement of silver equivalent to forty 
dirhams or 123 gms of silver. 

awsaq: plural of wasq, a measure of volume equal to sixty sa's. 

band (plural burud): a postal stage of twelve miles, state communica- 
tion and transport system, loan word from veredus (L.) via beredos 

daniq (plural dawdniq): a coin equal to one sixth of a dirham. 

dhira' (plural adhru '): a cubit varying from 45 cm to 66.5 cm. 

dinar (plural danamr): a gold coin 4.4 gm in weight 

dirham (plural darahim): a silver coin 3.08 gm in weight. 

fals (plural fulus): a small copper coin, used as small change, but with 
no intrinsic value. 

faraq (plural furqdn): a kind of large pot used as a measure in Madina, 
containing about three sd 's of water. 

farsakh (plural fardsikh): a measurement of length, about three 
miles/five km, 

irdabb or ardabb (plural aradib): ardeb, a dry measure of about five and 
a half bushels. 

jarlb (plural ajriba): a grain measure of capacity of either 16, 26, or 
29.5 litres; also a unit of area equal to ten qasaba squared, or 3,600 
square cubits, which varied according to the length of the cubit. 

mithqal (plural mathdqil): "miskal", the weight of one dinar, the equiva- 
lent of 72 grains of barley (equals 4.4 grams). It may be somewhat 
less or more. [10 dirhams weigh 7 mithqdls.] 

mudd (plural amddd or midad): a measure of volume, approximately a 
double-handed scoop. 

qafiz (plural aqfiza): "caflz", a measure of grain consisting of twelve 
sd's; also a unit of area equal to 360 square cubits. 


Weight and Measurement 

qasaba (plural qasabat): a measure of 6 cubits. 

qintar (plural qanatir): "kantar", a relatively large weight-measure for 

food-grains, etc., e.g, wheat, maize, oat, barley, approx. 45 kgs, 
qlrat (plural qarant): a measure of weight with various meanings, either 

a twelfth of a dirham or a huge weight like that of Mount Uhud. 
qist (plural aqsat): a measure of grain, a bushel. 

ritl (plural artal): "rotl", a measure of weight, approximately one pound. 
sa* (plural aswd ' or aswu r ): a measure of volume equal to four mudds, a 

mudd being a double-handed scoop. 
shibr (plural ashbar): a handspan, unit of length. 
'uqlya: (plural awaq): a measure of silver, equal to forty dirhams or 

123 gms of silver. 
wasq (plural awsaq): a measure of volume equal to sixty sa 's. 


Arabic Expressions 

'alayhi's-salam: "peace be upon him", a formula used after the name of 
a Prophet. 

Allahu akbar: the Arabic expression meaning "Allah is greater." Also 
called the takblr. 

Allahu a Mara: an Arabic expression meaning "Allah knows best". 

amraa ba'd: an expression used for separating an introductory from the 
main topics in a speech; the introductory being usually concerned 
with Allah's praises and glorification. Literally it means "whatever 
comes after" 

astaghfiru'llah: the Arabic expression meaning "I ask forgiveness of 

a'udhu billahi min ash-shaytan ar-rajim: the Arabic expression mean- 
ing "I seek protection in Allah from the accursed Shaytan," One 
says this before beginning to recite the Qur'an. 

f azza wa jail: a formula used after mentioning the name of Allah mean- 
ing "Mighty and Majestic is He", 

barakallah fik: an expression which means: "May the blessings of 
Allah (be upon you)." When a Muslim wants to thank another per- 
son, he uses different statements to express his thanks, appreciation, 
and gratitude. One of them is to say "BarakaMh" 

bismi'llah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim: the basmala: "In the name of Allah, 
the All-Merciful, the All-Compassionate". 

fi amani'llah: valedictory phrase meaning "in Allah's protection.*' 

fi sabilillah: the Arabic expression meaning "In the Way of Allah", "for 
the Cause of Allah". 

al-hamdu lillah wa shukru lillah: the Arabic expression which means 
"Praise belongs to Allah and thanks to Allah." 

hasbala: the Arabic expression, "Hasbuna'llah wa ni'ma'l-waktl" 
meaning "Allah is enough for us and an excellent Guardian." 


Arabic Expressions 

Hasbuna'Ilah wa ni'ma'l-wakil: the Arabic expression meaning "Allah 

is enough for us and an excellent Guardian." 
hawqala: the Arabic expression, "la hawla wa la quwwata ilia billah" 

which means "There is no power nor strength save by Allah." 
lima lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji'un: This is something which a Muslim 

expresses when he is afflicted by a misfortune, the meaning of 

which is "We are from Allah and to Him we are returning." It is 

taken from an ay at of the Qur'an (2:156). 
insha'llah: the Arabic expression meaning "If Allah wills". 
istighfar: to ask the forgiveness of Allah, especially by saying, 

"Astaghfiru'llah", "I seek the forgiveness of Allah." 
istithna': exception, saying "In sha'llah" "If Allah wills." 
jalla jalaluh: the formula said after the name of Allah meaning "Great 

is His Majesty." 
jazaka'Ilahu khayran: This is a statement of thanks and appreciation to 

be said to the person who does a favour. Instead of saying "thanks" 

(Shukrari), this phrase is used. It means: "May Allah reward you for 

the good." 
karrama'llahu wajhahu: "May Allah honour him", a formula used 

when 'AIT ibn Abl Talib is mentioned. 
Labbayk: "At your service", the talbiya or call of the pilgrim to his 

Lord in the Hajj. 
la hawla wa la quwwata ilia billah: The meaning of this expression is: 

"There is no power and no strength save in Allah." This is said by a 

Muslim when he is struck by a calamity, or is taken over by a situa- 
tion beyond his control. 
H-wajhi'Ilah: literally, "for the Face of Allah," meaning in order to 

obtain the pleasure of Allah, purely for Allah Himself. 
ma's-salama: "with peace", a formula for ending letters. 
ma sha'llah: a phrase meaning literally, "What Allah wishes," and it 

indicates a good omen. 
mawlana: "our master", a term of respect. 
rabbana wa laka'1-hamd: "Our Lord, praise is Yours," said after rising 

from ruku' after saying "sami 1 Allahu liman hamidah" (unless he is 

the imam of the prayer). 


radiya'llahu l anha 

radiya'llahu 'anha: the formula "May Allah be pleased with her", used 
after a female Companion. 

radiya'llahu 'aithu: This is an expression to be used by Muslims when- 
ever a name of a Companion of the Prophet Muhammad is men- 
tioned or used in writing. It means: "May Allah be pleased with 

radiya'llahu 'anhum: the formula "May Allah be pleased with them", 
used after a group of Companions. 

rahiniahu'llah: the formula "May Allah have mercy on him" 

as-salamu 'alaykum: "Peace be upon you," the greeting of the 

salla'llahu 'alayhi wa sallam: "may Allah bless him and grant him 
peace", the formula spoken after mentioning the Prophet 

sami' Allahu liman hamidah: "Allah heard him who sent his praises to 
Him," said by someone praying when he rises from ruku" (unless he 
is following an Imam in the prayer). 

sayyiduna: "our master", a term of respect. 

subhanallah: "Glorified is Allah " To honour Allah and make Him free 
from all (unsuitable evil things) that are ascribed to Him, (or 
"Glorified be Allah"). 

subhanahu wa ta'ala: "Glorified is He and exalted," an expression that 
Muslims use when the name of Allah is pronounced or written. 

ta'ala: "Exalted is He", an expression used after the name of Allah is 

ta'awwudh: saying "I seek refuge with Allah..." (a'udhu billahi min 
ash-shaytan ar-rajim). 

tabaraka'Hah: the formula "Blessed is Allah" 

tahmid: saying the expression "aUhamdu lillah", "Praise belongs to 
' Allah". 

takblr: saying "Allahu Akbar" "Allah is greater". 

talblya: saying "Labbayk" ("At Your service") during the Hajj* 

tamjid: glorifying Allah. 

tardiya: saying one of the expressions which begin "radiya'llahu. 

tasblh: glorification, saying "Subhanallah", "Glory be to Allah". 


Arabic Expressions 

taslinilt: Uttering a prayer for the sneezer which takes the form, 
yarhamuk Allah", "may Allah have mercy on you." 

wajhu'llah: "the Face of Allah", meaning for the sake of Allah, irre- 
spective of any reward in this life, purely for Allah. 


Historical Terms 

Abbasids: the dynasty of khalifs who ruled from 132/750 to 65671258 
and had their capital in Baghdad. They based their claim to power 
on their descent from al- 'Abbas, the uncle of the Prophet, may Allah 
bless him and grant him peace. During their reign, Islamic arts, liter- 
ature, and culture blossomed and flourished. The location of the 
capital in Baghdad had a major impact on Islam, transforming it 
from a distinctly Mediterranean religion to one with more eastern 

abna': literally "sons", a term applied to members of the Abbasid 
household and by extension to the Khurasan! and other mawdlT who 
became adoptive members, The first generation of Khorasanis were 
called abna' ad-da 'wa or abna' ad-dawla, which might be translat- 
ed as "Sons of the Revolution". They enjoyed great prestige. In 
Baghdad, they wore turbans and garments with a border to distin- 
guish them. At-Taban says that they numbered about 20,000. 

Abraha: the Christian viceroy of the Negus who ruled Yemen in- the 
sixth century and marched against Makka in 570, the year of the 
birth of the Prophet with the intention of destroying the Ka'ba. The 
year in which this happened is known as the "Year of the Elephant" 
since he had several elephants in his army. The army was destroyed 
by stones dropped by flocks of birds. This event is described in the 
Qur'an in Sura 105; "Do you not see what your Lord did with the 
Companions of the Elephant? Did He not bring all their schemes to 
nothing, unleashing upon them flock after flock of birds, bombard- 
ing them with stones of hard-baked clay, making them like stripped 
wheat-stalks eaten bare?" 

Abu Bakr: the first khalif after the Messenger of Allah, born either two 
years or six years after the Year of the Elephant (51 years before the 
Hijra). He was the best of the Companions, renowned for his sincer- 
ity, and the Prophet's closest friend. He died in 13/634 at the age of 
63 and was buried beside the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless 
him and grant him peace. 



Abu'l-Husayn, Band: the Kalbite governors of Sicily at the end of the 
tenth and beginning of the eleventh century. They supported the 

Abu Muslim: 'Abdu J r-Rahman ibn Muslim al-Khurasani, the mysteri- 
ous individual who led the Abbasid rebellion in Khorasan in 
128/746. He was murdered by the Abbasids in 132/750. 

'Adnan: a descendant of Isma'il and ancestor of the northern Arabs. 
Qahtan was the ancestor of the southern Arabs. 

Aftasids: Muslim Berber dynasty that ruled one of the party kingdoms 
(td'ifas) at Badajoz in western Spain (1022-94) in the period of dis- 
unity after the demise of the Umayyad caliphate of Cordoba. 

agha: a title of honour among the Turks. 

Agha Khan: modern leader of Isma'Hi Shi'ite Muslims. 

Aghlabids: a dynasty also called the Banu al-Aghlab 5 an Arab Muslim 
dynasty that ruled Ifriqiya (Tunisia and eastern Algeria) from 800 to 
909, nominally subject to the 'Abbasid caliphs of Baghdad but in 
fact independent with their capital in Qayrawan, 

ahl al-ayyam: the people who took part in the early battles along the 
Euphrates; those who did not revolt during the Ridda. 

Ahl al-Kisa': "People of the Cloak". In 10 AH, a delegation of the 
Christians of Najran came to the Prophet. On the basis of the 
Qur' attic ayats, 3:59-61, they met and the Prophet threw his cloak 
over 'AH, Fatima, Hasan and Husayn. 

Ahl as-Suffa: the People of the Bench, the poor and needy among the 
Companions of the Prophet who lived on a verandah (sujfa) next to 
the house of the Prophet and the mosque in Madina, Also called 
Ashab as-Suffa or sometimes Adyaf al-Isldm ("the guests of 

Ahzab: the confederates: the term used for Quraysh and their allies at 
the Battle of the Trench. 

ajnad: armies; administrative districts in greater Syria; the plural of 

akhbar: relatively short accounts usually introduced by an isnad. This is 
the earliest form of Islamic history. 

Akhbarl: a school among the Shi'a who recognise four sources of Law: 
Qur'an, hadfth, 'aql and ijmd '. Opposed to the Usulis. 



'Alawites: partisans of 'AH ibn Abi Talib. 

'Alawl: offshoot of Shi'ite Islam prevalent in part of northern Syria; 
today, about 10% of the Syrian population, but Hafiz al-Asad, presi- 
dent since 1970, is an Alawite, so their importance outweighs their 
numbers. They are well-represented in the Syrian military. 

'All ibn Abi Talib: the fourth of the early khalifs, the cousin and son-in- 
law of the Prophet by marriage to his daughter, Fatima, and 
renowned for his bravery and wisdom. He is regarded by Shi*a 
Muslims as the first Imam after Muhammad. He was murdered by a 
Kharijite in 40/661 and is buried at Najaf, Iraq. 

'amil: provincial governor {wall is also used to designate this post). 

amir (plural umara '): general, ruler, governor, prince. 

' Amwas: a major plague in Syria in 18/639 which killed many of the 

Ansar: the "Helpers", the people of Madina who welcomed and aided 
the Prophet and the Muhajirim. 

al-'Aqaba: lit. the steep slope, a mountain pass to the north of Makka 
just off the caravan route to Madina, where the Prophet met with the 
first Muslims from Yathrib (Madina) in two successive years. On the 
first occasion, they pledged to follow the Messenger, and on the sec- 
ond or Great Pledge of 'Aqaba, to defend him and his Companions 
as they would their own wives and children. 

'aqida (plural 'aqa'id): creed, dogma or tenet of faith firmly based on 
how things are, distinct from the testimony of faith (shahdda). 

'Aqiq: a valley about seven kilometres west of Madina. 

al-Aqsa: important Jerusalem mosque, nearby which is the Dome of the 
Rock, whose golden dome covers the place where the Prophet left to 
ascend to heaven during the Mi 'raj. 

'Arafa: a plain fifteen miles to the east of Makka on which stands the 
Jabal ar-Rahma, the Mount of Mercy. One of the essential rites of 
hajj is to stand on 'Arafa on the 9th of Dhu'l-Hijja. 

ard: "land", administrative territory. 

'ard: presentation, a military review, 

'arif (plural 'urafa'): "one who knows", an overseer, an official in 
charge of a military division in early Basra and Kufa. 

'asabiya: tribal and group solidarity. 


asawira: heavy mailed cavalry, loanword from Middle Persian usvardn. 
Uswar is the singular in Arabic. 

al-'Ashara al-Mubashshara: the ten Companions promised the 
Garden, which varies somewhat, but the usual order is: Abu Bakr, 
'Umar, 'Uthman, 'All, Talha, az-Zubayr, 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn ' Awf, 
Sa'd ibn Abi Waqqas, Sa'id ibn Zayd, and Abu 'Ubayda ibn al- 

Ash'arite: someone who adheres to the theological and philosophical 
position of Abu'l-Hasan al-Ash'ari (d. 324/936). The main features 
of this school are the negation of cause and effect as everything is 
caused by Allah, and the discontinuity between Allah and His cre- 
ation. (Compare with Maturidite). 

'a shir a (plural 'asha'ir): kinsfolk, clan, those descended from the same 
ancestor; the smallest subdivision of a tribe. A synonym for qablla. 

ashraf: tribal leaders and notables. 

'Askar al-Mahdi: military camp of al-Mahdi, the west bank in Baghdad 
which the khalif al-Mansur developed for his supporters. 

Assassin: member of a militant group of Isma'ili Shi'ites who fought 
against the Seljuks and other Sunnl rulers between 1092 and 1256. 
The word "assassin" comes from "hashashin, " that is, "hashish 
users," since it was reputed that the Assassins got high on hashish 
before going into action. 

Awa'il: a literary genre which dealt with "firsts", "the first person to do 
this or that " 

'AwalTl-Madlna: the outskirts of Madina at a distance of four or more 

*awasim: strongholds; the inner line fortresses between military march- 

Aws: along with Khazraj, one of the two major tribes in Madina. 

ayyam: (literally 'days'), tribal lore; battle days. 

Ayyam al-'Arab: record of guerilla wars between Arab tribes, inter-trib- 
al hostilities. 

*ayyar (plural 'ayyarun): Arabic for "vagabond" or "scoundrel", any 
member of a class of warriors common to Iraq and Iran in the ninth- 
twelfth centuries, often associated mfutuwwa organizations. 



al-Azhar: a Muslim mosque-university in Cairo of enormous prestige. It 
was founded by the Fatimids in 358/969. 

Bab-i 'All: the Sublime Porte, the office of the Ottoman Grand Vizier. 

Badr: a place near the coast, about 95 miles to the south of Madina 
where, in 2 AH in the first battle fought by the newly established 
Muslim community } the 313 outnumbered Muslims led by the 
Messenger of Allah overwhelmingly defeated 1000 Makkan idol- 
aters. Someone who took part in the Battle of Badr is called a Badrl. 

Bakka'un: the Weepers. These were the people that could not accompa- 
ny the Prophet on his campaign to Tabuk because they lacked the 
resources to do so. They started to weep when they could not go. 

al-Balat: a paved area of Madina between the Mosque and the Market. 

Banu: lit. sons, a tribe or clan. The Umayyads are the Banii Umayya and 
the Abbasids are the BanuT-*Abbas, The Banu Isra'il are the tribe of 
Isra'il, also known as Ya'qiib son of Ishaq. 

Banu Tughsh: the Ikhshidids. 

al-Baql': the cemetery of the people of Madina where many of the fami- 
ly of the Prophet and his Companions are buried. 

Barghawata: a Berber confederation belonging to the Masmuda group, 
which dominated the Atlantic coast of Morocco between Sale and 
Safi from the eighth to the twelfth century. They practised a special 
religion which appears to have been a Berber distortion of Islam 
with Shi'ite infiltrations and a Kharijite moral austerity. 

barld: the post and information service. 

Barmakids: also called Barmecides, from the Arabic al-Baramika, or 
al-Barmak, a priestly family of Iranian origin from Balkh who 
achieved prominence in the eighth century as scribes and viziers to 
the early 'Abbasid caliphs. Their ancestor was a barmak, a title 
borne by the high priest in the Buddhist temple of Nawbahar. 

al-Bayda': a place 60 kilometres south of Madina on the route to 
Madina, near Dhu'l-Hulayfa. 

Bayt al-Mal: the "house of wealth," the treasury of the Muslims where 
income from zakat and other sources is gathered for redistribution. 

Bayt al-Maqdis: the Pure House, a name of Jerusalem, referring to the 
Temple of Sulayman. 

bey: a Turkic title for a chief. Today it is a term of respect. 



Beylerbey: bey of beys, title of a provincial governor. 

bid'a: innovation, changing the original teaching of the Prophet, some- 
thing introduced into Islam after the formative period, 

birdhawn: destrier, the heavy Persian warhorse. 

Bi'tha: the beginning of the Prophet's mission, his call to Prophethood 
in 610. 

Bu'ath: a battle between Aws and Khazraj two years before the Hijra. 

Buraq: the mount on which the Prophet made the Isrd f . 

Buwayhids: or Buyids, a Shfite Persian dynasty who controlled the 
Abbasid khalifate from 945 - 1055. 

buyutat: outstanding or leading families. 

Camel, Battle of: one of the major incidents of the first Civil War 
(Fitna) in which the forces of 'All defeated the forces of 'A'isha, 
Talha, and az-Zubayr in a battle fought outside Basra in 36/656. 

da'I: Shi'ite propagandist, recruiting officer. 

Dar al-Harb: the Abode of Conflict, the domain of the unbelievers. 

Dar iil-Hijra: the abode of those who emigrated in the Cause of Allah 
from Makka to Madina, i.e. Madina itself. 

dar al-imara: "house of government"; the Islamic administrative com- 
pound in cities such as Basra and Kufa. The buildings included the 
governor's residence, prison and treasury, and housed the adminis- 
trative departments. 

Dar al-Islam: territory of Islam. 

Dar Nidwa: the assembly of chiefs of Quraysh in Kufa. 

dar ar-rizq: "house of provisions", a military depot established to sup- 
ply the Muslim army. 

dar as-sina'a: shipyard, the source of the word "arsenal". 

Dar as-Sulh: or Dar al- 'Ahd, territory not under Muslim law nor at war 
with the Muslims. 

daskarat: (from dastkarf), plural dasakir, originally landed estate often 
with a fortified mansion; frontier posts. 

Da'wat al-Haqq: "proclaiming the Truth," the duty of every Muslim. 

Dayr al-Jamajim: a battle in Iraq in 82/701 which ended the rebellion 



devshirme: Ottoman system of taking Christian boys, converting them 
to Islam, and training them for military or administrative service. 

Dhat al-Jaysh: a place about twelve miles from Madina. 

Dhat an-Nitaqayn: a nickname for Asma\ the daughter of Abu Bakr. It 
literally means "a woman with two belts". She was called that by the 
Prophet because she tore her belt in two to tie up the provisions for 
the Hijra of the Prophet and Abu Bakr. 

DmVl-Hulayfa: the miqat of the people of Madina, now called Bayar 

Dhu Nurayn: a title of 'Uthman, the third khalif, because he married 
two daughters of the Prophet: Umm Kulthum and Ruqayya. It 
means "he who has two lights". 

Dhu Qar: a short-lived victory of the Arab tribes over a Sasanid army 
around the turn of the seventh century. 

Dhu Tuwa: a well known well, now within Makka, but in earlier times 
outside of it. 

dihqan (plural dahaqin): landlord, member of the land owning gentry in 
pre-Islamic Persia. 

dlwan (plural dawawtn): originally the register of soldiers and pensions 
under 'Umar. Then it became a sort of governmental department - a 
dlwan for the collection of taxes, a dtwan for the writing of docu- 
ments. So, administration in general. There were three registers: one 
for those were were able to fight but needed weapons (dlwan at- 
muqatila), one for stipends (dlwan al- s ata ') and the muster roll 
(dtwan al- 'ard). It also means collected works of a poet. 

dlwan al-khatam: department of the seal, 

dlwan al-mustaghallat: the department in charge of income from state 
property under the early Marwanids at Damascus, 

dlwan at-tawql': the chancery office or board of correspondence. 

dlwan zimam: the registry department. 

diya': landed estate. 

Duldiil: the mule of the Prophet which was a gift from the Muqawqis. 

effendi: title in Ottoman system for a religious or civil authority. 
Replaced by bey today. 



Fadak: a small, rich oasis in the north of the Hijaz which had been the 
property of the Jews of Banu Murra and Banu Sa'd ibn Bakr. They 
offered to surrender it to the Prophet provided they could keep half 
of the produce. 

al-Faruq: a name for the second khalif, 'Umar ibn, al-Khattab. It means 
a man who makes a distinction between truth and falsehood or 
between cases. 

Fatima: the youngest daughter of the Prophet and Khadlja. She married 
'AIT who became the fourth Rightly Guided Khalif. She died a few 
months after the Prophet in 1 1/632. 

Fatimids: an Isma'ili Shi'ite dynasty which ruled in North Africa for 
three centuries until 1 171. They are also called the Banu *Ubayd. 

Fijar War: "The War of Trangression", which took place because of a 
violation in the sacred months. It was between Quraysh and Kinana 
against Hawazin. It was followed by the Hilf al-Fudul. 

firman: royal rescript, Ottoman or Persian. 

Etna: inter-Muslim conflict, civil war. 

Fustat: Egyptian garrison town in early Islamic times; later an adminis- 
trative center, located near modern Cairo. 

futuh: "conquests", accounts of conquest campaigns, a type of historical 
writing which was an extension of the maghazi. 

al-Ghaba: (literally "the forest") a well-known place near Madina. 

Ghadir al-Khumm: the pond of Khumm, an oasis between Makka and 
Madina where the Prophet stopped on his return from the Farewell 
Hajj and made a prayer for 'All. The Shi'a interpret this as being 
'All's appointment as the Prophet's successor. 

ghali (plural ghulat): one who exaggerates or goes beyond bounds in 
reverence for 'All. 

gharat: raids. 

ghiyar: a token, like the zunnar (waist-band) worn by non-Muslim sub- 

Habasha: Abyssinia. 

Hafsa bint 'Umar ibn al-Khattab: one of the wives of the Prophet. She 
was married to Khunays ibn Hudhayfa before she married the 
Prophet. He was present at Badr and then died in Madina. She mar- 



ried the Prophet after the Battle of Uhud. She died in Madina in 

45/665 at the age of about 60. 
hajib: door keeper or chamberlain. 
hama: a superstitious belief of the Arabs of the JakilTya. It was that the 

unavenged spirit of a slain person took the form of a night bird. 
Hamza: an uncle of the Prophet who became a Muslim and was mar- 
tyred at the battle of Uhud. 
haras: the bodyguard of an Islamic ruler or governor. 
al-Harra: a stony tract of black volcanic rock east of Madina where a 

terrible battle took place in 63 AH (26 August 683) between the 

forces of Yazid I and 'Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr which ended in 

Madina being sacked and plundered. 
Hariiriya: the first Kharijites or schismatics who separated themselves 

from 'AH and based themselves at Harura', a town two miles from 

Hashimite: someone descended from the family of Hashim, the great 

grandfather of the Prophet. 
hawari: apostle in the Christian usage; a disciple. 
Ilawazin: one of the large Arab tribes. 
al-Hijr: "the rocky tract" a town in Arabia about 150 miles north of 

Madina, where the people of Thamud lived. 
Hilf al-Fudul: "the Alliance of Virtue'*, a pact in which the Prophet took 

part twenty years before the Revelation. Those who made this 

covenant - the houses of Hashing Zuhra and Taym - pledged that 

they would forever stand on the side of the victim of injustice. 
hima: a place of pasturage and water prohibited to the public. It was 

used for animals paid as zakat and mounts used for jihad. 
Hira': a mountain two miles north of Makka where the Prophet used to 

go into retreat in a cave before the Revelation came to him. It is now 

called Jabal an-Nur or the Mount of Light. 
Hiraql: Heraclius. 
Homage of ar-Ridwan: a pledge which the Muslims took to avenge 

'Uthman when they thought that Quraysh had murdered him at al- 

Hudaybiyya in 6/628. 
Hubal: pre-Islamic idol, god of the moon. 



Al-Hudaybiya: a well-known place ten miles from Makka on the way to 

Jidda where the Homage of ar-Ridwan took place. 
Hunayn: a valley between Makka and la' if where the battle took place 

between the Prophet and Quraysh pagans in 8/630. 
hurras: watchmen or the night watch in cities, or sentries who guarded 

walls and gates. 

Ibadiyya: the remnants of the Kharijite rebellion in the second civil war 
between the Umayyads and 'Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr. 

Hriqiya: North Africa, particularly what is now Tunisia. 

Ikhwan: "brethren", the plural of akh ("brother"). In Arabia, members 
of a religious and military brotherhood that figured prominently in 
the unification of the Arabian Peninsula under Ibn Sa'ud (1912 - 30). 

'ilj: a person of low social status; the plural 'uluj means riffraff. 

Ilya': a name for Jerusalem. 

intifada: an Arabic term literally meaning "a throwing off'; Palestinian 
uprising against Israeli occupation that began spontaneously in late 

iqta': land grant. 

jababira: "tyrants", how the Abbasids referred to the Umayyads. 

Jabal an-Nur: see£fira\ 

Jabal Thawr: the cave near Makka in which the Prophet and Abu Bakr 
hid at the start of their Hijra to Madina. 

janissary: Christian conscript foot-soldier in the Ottoman army, convert- 
ed to Islam and trained to use firearms. 

Jazira: Mesopotamia or north-eastern Syria. 

Ji'rana: a place near Makka, where the Messenger of Allah distributed 
the booty from the Battle of Hunayn and from where he went into 
ihram to perform 'umra. 

al-Juhfa: the mlqat of the people of Syria and Europe. 

kahin (plural kahana or kuhhari): a soothsayer in pagan times. 

kapudanpasha: the Beylerbey of the sea, or admiral. Barbarossa was 
the kapudanpasha in 1531. 

katib: an administrative secretary; scribe. 

Khadija: the Prophet's first wife and his first follower. She was a mod- 
erately wealthy widow who hired Muhammad to manage the cara- 



van business left to her by her first husband. Five years later, when 
Muhammad was twenty-five and Khadija was forty, she proposed 
marriage to him. They had a happy marriage with several children, 
including four daughters, Zaynab, Ruqayya, Umm Kulthum and 
Fatima. During her lifetime, the Prophet took no other wives. She 
died in 619. 

al-Khandaq: the Ditch. In 5/627, the Makkans, assisted by the Jewish 
tribe of Banii Nadr and the Arab tribes of Banu Ghatafan and Banu 
Asad, marched on Madina with an army of ten thousand soldiers. 
The Prophet ordered a ditch to be dug on the unprotected side of 
Madina and manned constantly. The Makkans were forced to under- 
take a siege which failed. 

Kharijites: or Khawarij, the earliest sect who separated themselves 
from the body of the Muslims and declared war on all those who 
disagreed with them, stating that a wrong action turns a Muslim into 
an unbeliever. 

Khawarij: Kharijites. 

Khaybar: Jewish colony to the north of Madina which was laid siege to 
and captured by the Muslims in the seventh year after the Hijra 
because of the Jews' continual treachery. 

Khazraj: along with Aws, one of the two major tribes in Madina. 

khedive: "Viceroy," title of Egypt's ruler (1867 - 1914). 

Khulafa* ar-Rashidun: "the Rightly-guided Khalifs", especially the 
first four khalifs: Abu Bakr, 'Umar, 'Uthman and 'All. Sometimes 
'Umar ibn 'Abdu'l-'Aziz is referred to as the fifth of the Rashidun. 

Khurasan: Persian province east of the Caspian Sea; a centre of many 
dissident movements in early Islamic history. 

Kisra: Khosrau, a generic term for the emperor of Persia; also a silver 
coin of that name which the Muslims used for a period before mint- 
ing Islamic coins. 

Kufa: a place in Iraq, near Najaf, that was the chief military garrison 
and administrative centre of the Muslims when they conquered Iraq. 
It was founded in 15/638 as a garrison town by 'Umar ibn al- 

kura (plural kuwar)i from the Greek chora, an administrative district. 



al-Lat: female idol worshipped by the pagan Arabs in the Hijaz in the 

al-Lizam: the settlement of affairs, in the hadith, it refers to the battle of 
Badr, which was the means of settling affairs between the Muslims 
and the pagans. 

magharim: taxes not sanctioned by Islamic law. 

maghazi: battles, military expeditions. 

Majus: Magian, derived from Syriac mgoshd, derived from Old Persian 

Makhzum: a powerful clan of Quraysh. 

mamluk: slave, "someone who is owned"; derived from malaka, to pos- 
sess. Synonym of c abd t a slave born of free parents. Also: (1) 
Turkish or Circassian slave soldier; (2) member of a military oli- 
garchy ruling Egypt and Syria (1250 - 1517) and retaining local 
power in some areas up to the 19th century. 

al-Manat: female idol worshipped by the pagan Arabs in the Hijaz in 
the Jdhiliya. 

Marwanids: the Umayyad rulers descended from Marwan ibn al- 
Hakam, who assumed power in 64/685 and were overthrown by the 
'Abbasids in 132/750. 

marzpan: (marzban) military governor of a later Sasanian frontier dis- 

Maturldite: someone who follows the Maturldite school of kalam, 
which is very similar to the Ash'arite school. 

mawall: the plural of mawld. 

mawla (plural mawali)*. a person with whom a tie of wald ' has been 
established, usually by having been a slave and then set free. It was 
also used for a type of political patronage, 

Mihna: the Inquisition instituted by the 'Abbasid khalif al-Ma'mun, 
which required all important people to publicly state that they 
believed that the Qur'an was created, even if they did not. 

milla: religion, creed, faith or spiritual community. In Turkey, millet was 
used for the various religious groups within the empire. 

misr (plural amsar): a garrison city and administrative capital. 

al-Misran: the two great cities: Kufa and Basra. 



al-mubayyida: "the white ones", the 'Alids, because of the colour of 
their flag to contrast with the black of the ' Abbasids, Also the fol- 
lowers of al-Munaqqa' who wore white garments. 

Muhajirun: the Companions of the Messenger of Allah who accepted 
Islam in Makka and made hijra to Madina. 

al-Munaqqa'; a name meaning "the veiled". His actual name is unclear. 
He came from a village of Marv. He revolted against the 'Abbasid 
regime in the time of al-Mansur. He called on his followers to obey 
the laws of Mazdak. He was defeated in 162 or 163 (778/779) after a 
two year campaign. 

Muqawqis: the title of the Byzantine viceroy of Egypt, 

Murabitun: those who hold fast together in the Cause of Allah with the 
aim of establishing the Dm of Allah, derived from the word 'ribat'. 
Also the name of a North African/Andalusian dynasty known often 
as the Almoravides, which lasted between 431/1039 and 539/1145. 

al-musawwida: "the black ones," meaning the Abbasids because of 
their black flags. Eventually al-Ma'mun adopted the colour green to 
put an end to the partisanship of the white and black flags. 

Musaylima: a false Prophet of the Banu Hanifa in Yamana who was one 
of the leaders of the Ridda. 

al-Mutalaththimun: "the Veiled ones," the name of the Murabitun, 
because the Sanhaja tribes covered their faces like the Tuareg and 
were therefore very distinct in Andalusia. 

Muwahhidim: the name of the North African/Andalusian dynasty, 
known often as the Almohads, which lasted between 524/1130 and 

muwallad: a Muslim from native Spanish stock. 

muwashshaha: a post classical form of Arabic poetry arranged in stan- 
zas which was very popular in Andalusia. 

Nahrawan: a decisive battle fought in 38/658 following the Battle of 
Siffin (37/657) in which ' All, the fourth khalif, and his army annihi- 
lated most of the Kharijites. 

Najaf: city in Iraq where f All was assassinated (40/661); hence, a Shi 'a 
pilgrimage center. 

Najashi: the Negus, king of Ethiopia, 

Najd: the region around Riyad in Saudi Arabia. 



naqib (plural nuqaba'): a person responsible to the goverment for the 
group of which he is a member, an official in charge of a military 
division at Basra and Kufa in the time of Ziyad ibn 'Ubaydullah; a 
person heading a group of six persons in an expedition (tribal 

nasab: genealogy, 

Negus: (Arabic najasht)\ a generic term for the King of Abyssinia. 

Nihawand: the decisive battle fought near Hamadan in 22/642 which 
marked the final defeat of the Persians by the Muslims. 

nusub: the singular of ansab. An-Nusub were stone alters at fixed places 
or graves, etc., whereon sacrifices were slaughtered during fixed 
periods of occasions and seasons in the name of idols, jinn, angels, 
pious men, saints, etc., in order to honour them, or to expect some 
benefit from them. 

qadi al-jama'a: "Qadi of the Community". Andalusia was divided into 
three major judicial areas, each with a qadi al-jama'a. These three 
were based at Seville, Cordoba and Murcia. 

Qadislya: a decisive four day battle fought against the Persians in Iraq 
in 15/636. 

Qahtan: (Biblical Jbktan), the ancestor of the southern Arabs. 

Qarn: the miqat of the people of Najd between Ta'if and Makka. 

qass (pi. qussas): Muslim popular preacher and storyteller, 

Qaswa': the Prophet's she-camel. 

Qayrawan: also spelled Qairouan or Kairouan, a town in north-central 
Tunisia. It was founded in 50/670 on the site of the Byzantine 
fortress of Kamouinia, and served as the camp from which the 
offensive was launched that resulted in the Islamic conquest of the 
Maghrib. Qayrawan was chosen as the capital of the Maghrib by the 
first Aghlabid ruler in about 182/800. Subsequently, it served (with 
Mahdiya) as the political centre through the Fatimid and Zlrid 
dynasties into the eleventh century. It has since declined into an iso- 
lated market town. 

Qaysar: "Caesar", a generic term for the ruler of the Romans. 

qisas al-anbiya': stories of the Prophets. 

qissa: a popular story, connected narrative or piece of propaganda. 



Quba: a village on the outskirts of Madina (originally about 5 km/3 
miles) where the first mosque in Islam was built, also known as the 
Masjid at-Taqwa (Mosque of Fear of God). 

Quraysh: one of the great tribes of Arabia, The Prophet Muhammad 
belonged to this tribe, which had great powers spiritually and finan- 
cially both before and after Islam came. Someone from this tribe is 
called a Qurayshi. 

rabad: suburb of a city. 

Rashidun: "the Rightly-guided," the first four khalifs of Islam: Abu 
Bakr, 'Umar, 'Uthman and 'AH. 

rawadif: later immigrants, late-comers to garrison cities after the con- 

ribat: the stronghold traditionally used by the Muslims to prepare for 
their jihad against the enemies of Islam, situated on exposed points 
of the frontier. 

Ridda: the defection of various Arab tribes after the death of the 
Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, which brought 
about the Ridda War. 

rizq; rations issued to soldiers. 

ar-Rum: the Romans or Byzantines; also Sura 30 of the Qur'an. 

sabiqa: seniority in Islam, hence as-sabiqun al-awwalun, "the first fore- 
most ones", those Muhajirun and Ansar who accepted Islam before 
the conquest of Makka and strove with their lives and their property 
in the Cause of Allah. 

Safavids: Iranian dynasty that ruled Persia from 907/1501 to 1145/ 

sahib ash-shurtal chief of police. 

sa'ifa: summer expedition of the Muslims. 

Sakb: the Prophet's stallion at the Battle of Uhud. 

Saljuqs: see Seljuqs. 

san jak: the domain under the control of a beylerbey, 

sardar: a Persian title, used also in India and Turkey, meaning a prince 
with a military command. 

Sartf: a place six miles away from Makka, 



Sawad: lit, "the Black", fertile agricultural region of south-central Iraq 
which is 'black' with date-palms. When it was first conquered by 
the Muslims, 'Umar ibn al-Khattab decided not to divide it among 
the fighters, but to levy the kharaj tax on it instead. 

Seljuqs: also Saljuqs, Seljuks. A dynasty of Oghuz Turkmen who first 
appeared in Transoxiana and Khorasan in the 5th/llth century, 
establishing an empire in 431/1040 which extended from Central 
Asia to the Byzantine marches in Asia Minor. It was a cohesive 
Sunn! state under the nominal authority of the 'Abbasid khalifs at 
Baghdad. After the death of Malikshah in 485/1092, internal conflict 
led to the fragmentation of the Seljuks' central authority into smaller 

Sham: the territory north of Arabia which is now divided into Syria, 
Palestine, Lebanon and Jordan. 

sharaf al-'ata': the highest stipend paid out in the Muslim army. 

shura: "consultation". In early Islamic history, this designates the board 
of electors that was constituted by 'Umar to elect his successor. 
Thereafter shura variously designated a council of state, or advisers 
to the sovereign, a parliament (in modern times), and sometimes a 
court of law with jurisdiction over claims made by citizens and pub- 
lic officials against the government. 

Shu'ubiya: nationalism, ethno-centricity; from a ninth century literary 
and political movement in which Persians sought equal power and 
status with the Arabs. 

Siffin: a place in Syria where, in 38/657, a battle between 'AH ibn Abl 
Talib and Mu'awiya took place. 

Sijilmasa: a great wealthy city on the edge of the desert which was built 
in 140/757 by Midrar ibn 'Abdullah. It was on the gold route. 

sikka: the die with which coins were minted, and hence the coins them- 

sipahi: Ottoman horseman supported by land grants in exchange for 
military service; see dinar 

siqlabi (plural saqaliba): Slav, originally used for slave soldiers from 
eastern Europe, later for all white slave soldiers and mercenaries. 

sira: "conduct, behaviour, way of acting", hence a biography, particular- 
ly the biography the Prophet. 



siyasa: rule or governance, as contrasted with Divine SharT'a. 

Sufyanids: those Umayyads who were descended from Abu Sufyan. It 
designates the Umayyad khalifs Mu'awiya, Yazld and Mu'awiya II. 

suq: market. 

Syr Darya: The Jaxartes, a major river, which flows through the territo- 
ry of Kazakhstan. 

Tabaqat: chronicles, biographies arranged according to generations. 

Tabuk: a town in northern Arabia close to Jordan. In the ninth year after 
the Hijra, the Messenger of Allah, hearing that the Byzantines were 
gathering a large army to march against the Muslims, led a large 
expedition, in his last campaign, to Tabuk, only to find the rumours 

Ta'if: an important town in the mountains, fifty miles to the east of 

Talas, Battle of: a battle which took place northeast of Tashkent in 
which the Chinese armies were crushed by the Arabs and retreated 
behind the Great Wall. It marks the end of Chinese power in Central 

talib: student. 

Tan'im: a place towards the north of Makka outside the sanctuary from 
where Makkans may assume the state of ihram to perform 'umra. 

taqiya: "prudent fear", not expressing one's true beliefs publicly out of 
fear of persecution. 

tawql'a (tawqf'at): the instructions or decisions of a ruler or official 
written at the bottom of a petition presented to him, 

Tawwabun: a group of Shi'a who in 64-5/684-5, marched from Kufa to 
fight an Umayyad army in the Battle of 'Ayn al-Warda and were vir- 
tualy exterminated. Their name was chosen from the Qur'an 2:54. 
They were trying to purge their shame at having failed to help al- 
Husayn at Karbala'. 

Tayyiba: "the good", another name of Madina. 

Thabir: a mountain near Makka. 

Thawr: a well-known mountain at Madina. (See Jabal Tiiawr). 

thughur: outer northern frontiers, particularly the Byzantine border, and 
the borders between the Christians and Muslims in Andalusia. 



ttmar: land grant by Ottoman sultans for military service. 

tulaqa': "freed'*, used for those persons who had embraced Islam on the 
day of the conquest of Makka. 

al-'Udwa: "the bank", the land on the other side of the Strait of 
Gibralter, the term by which the Andalusians designated what is 
now Morocco. 

I hud: a mountain just outside Madina where five years after the Hijra, 
the Muslims lost a battle against the Makkan idolaters. Many great 
Companions, and in particular Hamza, the uncle of the Prophet, 
were killed in this battle. 

'Ukaz: in the Hijaz in the region of Ta'if, southeast of Makka where a 
fair was held once a year at the beginning of Dhu'l-Qa ( da. It lasted 
for weeks. The Prophet stopped it because of the pagan elements it 

( Umar ibn al-Khattab: the second khalif of the Muslims, between 
13/634 and 23/644, renowned for his justness and refusal to compro- 
mise the Din. He asked Allah for martyrdom in the Cause of Allah 
in Madina and his request was granted after he was fatally stabbed 
by a Persian slave while doing the dawn prayer. He is buried next to 
Abu Bakr. 

Umayyads: the Muslim dynasty of khalifs who ruled in Damascus from 
40/661 onwards until they were overthrown by the Abbasids in 

Usuli: a school among the Shi 'a who recognise only the Qur'an and 
hadith as sources of fiqh. 

'Uthman ibn 'Affan: the third khalif of the Muslims, between 23/644 
and 36/656, renowned for his modesty. He ensured that the Qur'an 
in its written form was accurate and preserved. He was murdered in 
his house by rebels while he was reciting the Qur'an. 

al-'Uzza: female idol worshipped by the pagan Arabs in the Hijaz in the 

Wadri-Qura: located near the Gulf of 'Aqaba north of the Red Sea 
where a Jewish settlement was located in the time of the Prophet. 

Wahhabi: member of a sect dominant in Arabia whose earlier followers 
supported the family of Sa'ud and helped bring the Ottoman khali- 
fate to an end. 



Wasit: a military and commercial city in Iraq, especially important 
under the Umayyads. Wasit was established as a military encamp- 
ment in 83/702 on the Tigris River, between Basra and Kufa, by al- 
Hajjaj, Through its location on the Tigris, at the centre of a network 
of roads radiating to all parts of Iraq, Wasit became a great ship- 
building and commercial centre. It disappeared after a shift in the 
course of the Tigris, sometime in the 15th century CE. 

wazir: vizier, chief minister. 

wufud: the plural of wafd, delegations. 

Yalamlama: the mTqdt of the people of Yemen. 

Yarmuk: an important battle between the Muslims and the Byzantines 
in 13/636. 

Yathrib: the ancient name for Madina. 

Zanj: the black tribes of East Africa (hence Zanzibar). 

Zaydites: a branch of the Shi 'a deriving from Zayd ibn 'AH and hence 
called Fivers as they have five Imams. 

zunnar: a special belt worn by non-Muslims to distinguish them visual- 
ly from Muslims. 


Some Notable Historians 

al-Bakri: Abu 'Ubayd 'Abdullah ibn 'Abdu'l-'Aziz, one of the most 
important sources for the history of western Sudan. He was bom to a 
princely family in Andalusia and moved to Cordoba. He lived most 
of his life in Cordoba and Almerfa and was known as a geographer, 
theologian, philologist and botanist. He died in 487/1094. Few of his 
works remain, one of which is Kitab al-masalik wa'l-mamalik 
(Book of Routes and Realms) which is incomplete. 

al-Baladhurl: Ahmad ibn Yahya ibn Jabir, (d. 279/892). The author of 
Ansab al-Ashrafand Futuh al-Bulddn, He may have been of Persian 
origin but spent most of his life in Baghdad. He was one of the first 
to combine materials from slra and other sources into a historical 

adh-Dhahabi: Muhammad ibn Ahmad, great Turkoman Muslim schol- 
ar, born in Damascus in 673/1274, who wrote a hundred books, 
including the twenty-three volume biographical collection, Siyar 
a'lam an-NubaW and the thirty-six volume Ta'rikh al-Islam al- 
KabTr (Major History of Islam). He died in Damascus in 748/1347. 

ad-Dlnawarl: Abu Hanifa Ahmad ibn Dawud, (d. c. 282/895). He wrote 
al-Akhbar at-Tiwal (Extended Histories) a universal history in a sin- 
gle volume. Although he cites reports from both sides, he chooses 
his preferred version of events, mainly for literary reasons. He also 
uses non-Muslim, mainly Persian sources. 

Ibn 'Abd al-Hakam: Muhammad ibn 'Abdullah. He was an eminent 
MdHMfaqih in Egypt. People travelled to him. He was a close friend 
and follower of ash-Shafi'I. He wrote many books including Ahkam 
al-Qur'an, Kitab al-Majalis, ar-Radd 'ala ash-ShafiX and ar-Radd 
'ala ahl al-'Iraq. He died in 257/871. 

Ibn A'tham al-Kufi: a Shi'ite historian who wrote an extensive Kitab 
al-Futuh which he wrote in 204/819, which makes him earlier than 


Ibn al-Athlr 

al-Baladhuri. He combines all the traditions together into a single 
narrative. He died around 214/829. 

Ibn al-Athir: 'Izz ad-Din Abu'l-Hasan 'AH ibn Muhammad ash- 
Shaybam, (555/1160 - 630/1233). A historian who was born in 
Mosul. He has one of the most impartial accounts of history, al- 
Kdmil fi't-Ta'rikh, which was begun as an abridgement of at- 
Tabarfs Ta'rikh. He also wrote Usdal-Ghaba. 

Ibn ffisham: 'Abdu'l-Malik (d. 208/834) The author of Slrat Muham- 
mad, a re-working of the Kitab al-Maghazi of Ibn Ishaq, the earliest 
biography of the Prophet. 

Ibn 'Idhan: Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Marrakushl, Spanish historian 
in the late 7th/13th century, author ofal-Bayan al-Mughrib, It is one 
of the best sources of information on the dynasties of Andalusia and 
North Africa, 

Ibn Ishaq: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad. A great scholar who grew up in 
Madina. He has rare hadiths which are sometimes disacknowledged 
because of his vast memory. Malik ibn Anas is reported as having 
accused him of being a ShTite and inventor of legends. He went to 
Egypt and Iraq. He wrote Kitab al-Maghazi which is the earliest 
biography of the Prophet. He wrote it for the second 'Abbasid 
khalif, al-Mansur. His work has perished and what we have is the re- 
working of Ibn Hisham. At-Tabari also quotes from him. He died c. 
150/767 in Baghdad, having been invited there by al-Mansur. 

Ibn Kathir: 'Imad ad-din Isma'il ibn f Umar ibn Kathlr, Abu'1-Fida', 
born in 701/1302 in a village outside Damascus. He moved to 
Damascus at the age of five. He was widely travelled and studied 
with many famous scholars, including Ibn Taymiyya. He was a 
Shafi'I scholar with books with expertise in various areas. He was 
greatly respected. His history is entitled al-Bidaya wa'n-Nihaya. He 
died in Damascus in 774/1372. 

Ibn Khaldun: 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Muhammad, generally known as 
Ibn Khaldun after a remote ancestor, was born in Tunis in 732/1332 
to a family that had earlier emigrated there from Seville in Muslim 
Spain, Ibn Khaldun is universally recognized as the founder and 
father of sociology and sciences of History, He is best known for his 
famous Muqaddima, (Prolegomena), the introduction to the seven 
volume al-'Ibar, the world's first work on social theory. He was a 



philosopher and historian who travelled over North Africa and 
Andalusia where he held several government positions. He went to 
Egypt where the Marnluk az-Zahir made him the chief Maliki qadi, 
but was dismissed for preferring his native Tunisian dress to custom- 
ary official robes. He died in Cairo in 808/1406. 

Ibn Khallikan: Abu'l- 'Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad (d. 681/1282), a 
Muslim judge and author of a classic Arabic biographical dictionary 
which covers all fields, Wafayat al-a'yan. Ibn Khallikan studied in 
Irbil, Aleppo, and Damascus. 

Ibn Khayyat: Khalifa, Shabab, a Basran historian and muhaddith. He 
died in 240/854, wrote Kitab at-Tabaqat His Ta'rikh is the oldest of 
histories, covering 1 AH to 230 AH. He makes use of isnad and 
includes information from Umayyad narrations. 

Ibn TaghribirdI: Abu'l-Mahasin Yusuf: born in Cairo, prob. 812/1409- 
10. His father was a senior Mamluk amir who was commander-in- 
chief of Egyptian armies and governor of Damascus under az-Zahir 
Barquq. He died in 874/1470. He has a biographical collection, al- 
Manhai as-Soft and an-Nujum az-Zahira. 

al-Jahshiyari: Muhammad ibn 'Abdus, (d. 331/942), author of Kitab al- 
Wuzara" wa'l-Kuttab, an extensive work and administrative account. 
It begins in pre-Islamic times, going through the secretaries of the 
Prophet and khalifs until his own times. It is really a history of 

al-Mada'ini: Abu'l-Hasan 'All ibn Muhammad, famous early historian, 
(c. 132/749-50 to 228/843). He wrote a history on the khalifs and a 
book on campaigns, both of which are lost. He is the undisputed 
authority on the early history of the Arabs in Khurasan. He used 
Makkan and Madinan accounts. 

al-Maqqari: Abu'l- 'Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad (d. 1041/1631). His 
family was originally from Maqqara, twelve miles southeast of 
Msila, Algeria, but he lived for many years at Tlemcen. He wrote a 
history of Andalusia, Nafh at-Tib, which was a rather romantic 
account which has been translated by P, de Gayangos as History of 
the Mohammaden Dynasties in Spain. 

al-Maqrizi: Taql'd-dln Ahmad ibn 'All, (766/1364 - 845/1441). A very 
productive writer and one of the most famous historians of the 



Mamluk period. He was born and died in Cairo, He studied with Ibn 
Khaldun when he was there. His main work was al-Khitau 

al-Mas'udi: Abu'l-Hasan 'AH ibn al-Husayn. He was a descendant of 
'Abdullah ibn Mas'ud, the Companion. An expert geographer, a 
physicist and historian, al-Mas'udi was born in the last decade of the 
9th century CE in Baghdad, his exact date of birth being unknown. 
He was a Mu'tazilite who explored distant lands and died at Cairo, 
in 345/956. He travelled extensively. In Basra he completed his book 
Muriij adh-Dhahab, in which he has described his experience of 
various countries, peoples and climates. In Cairo he wrote his sec- 
ond extensive book Muriij al-Zaman in thirty volumes in which he 
describes in detail the geography and history of the countries that he 
had visited. His first book was completed in 332/943. Mas'udi is 
referred to as the Herodotus and Pliny of the Arabs, By presenting a 
critical account of historical events, he initiated a change in the art 
of historical writing, introducing the elements of analysis, reflection 
and criticism. He was the first author to make mention of windmills, 
which were invented by the Muslims of Sijistan. He also made 
important contributions to music and other fields of science He had 
'Atid tendencies, and only two works are left, Muriij adk-Dhahab 
and Kitab at-Tanblh. 

Muhammad ibn Sa'd: Abu 'Abdullah, the famous reliable Imam and 
mawla of the Banu Hashim, known as the katib (scribe) of al- 
Waqidf . He is the author of the Tabaqat. He died in 230/844-5 at the 
age of 62. He was born in 148/764-5. 

Nasr ibn Muzahim al-Minqari: (c. 120/738 - 212/827), an Arab of 
Tamlm and the author of Waq'at Siffin ("The Battle of Siffin") the 
earliest Shi'ite historical source. He was from Kufa, and settled in 
Baghdad where he studied under Sufyan ath-Thawri. He was a per- 
fumer and wrote several other books. 

as-Suyuti: Jalal ad-dm'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Abi Bakr, born in 849/1445. 
A SharTi mujtahid, Sufi, hadJth scholar and historian. He wrote 
books on almost every subject. He died in 911/1505. 

at-Tabari: Muhammad ibn Jarir, the well-known historian and Qur'an 
commentator, especially known for his large history. He was from 
Tabaristan and was born in 224/839 and died in 310/923. His history 



is a universal history, covering ancient nations, Biblical peoples, 
ancient Iran and the history of the Islamic world to 302/915. 
al-Waqidi: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn 'Umar, a freed man of 
Madina. A corn-merchant who> after heavy losses, moved to 
Baghdad. He became qadl in 'Askar al-Mahdi in Baghdad. He died 
in 207/823 while still qadl. He wrote a Kitab Siffin, Kitab ar-Ridda, 
al-Maghazt and a number of other books. His reliability was criti- 

al-Ya'qiibi: Ahmad ibn Abl Ya'qub (d. 284/897), a historian and geog- 
rapher. He was pro-Alid and anti-Zubayrid, but served the Abbasid 
khalifs. His history puts stress on economic factors. He covers scien- 
tific and philosophical works and is the sole Muslim source for the 
nomenclature of the Khazar kings. His history is narrative. He wrote 
a Ta'rtkh and Kitab al-Buldan. 

Yaqut: ibn 'Abdullah al-HamawI ar-Ruml, by origin a Greek. He was 
born in 575/1179. He was captured in Byzantine territory and sold 
to a Syrian merchant in Baghdad who gave him a good education 
and later sent him to trade on his behalf. He was freed in 596/1 199 
and continued to travel, exploring libraries. He began Mu 'jam al- 
Buldan in 608/1212 and continued to put the finishing touches to it 
up to his death in Aleppo in 626/1229. 


Some Early Historical Sources 

A'mal al-A'Iam: "Deeds of the Great" by Ibn al-Khatib (d. 774/1374), 
the wazlr of Granada and a contemporary of Ibn Khaldun. A 'mdl al- 
A Ham is a general Muslim history in three parts: the Muslim East, 
Spain and North Africa and Sicily. The third part was not properly 
completed. The third part is translated by R. Castrillo as Historia 
medieval islamica de Norte de Africa y Sicilia. 

Ansab al-Ashraf: "Lineage of the Nobles" by al-Baladhuri (d. 
279/892), a fairly objective history, one-third of which is on the 
Umayyads. It contains a wealth of historical information. 

al-Bidaya wa'n-Nihaya fTt-Ta'rikh: "The Beginning and the End on 
History" by Ibn Kathlr (d. 774/1374), a large universal history. 

Futiih al-Buldan: by al-Baladhuri (d. 279/892) on the Muslim con- 
quests. Translated by Philip Hitti as The Origins of the Islamic State, 
it is indispensible for the history of the Muslim conquests. Al- 
Baladhurl made personal inquiries from local sources and so he has 
more primary information. He is more interested in the east. He has 
the most comprehensive account of the advance of the Arab armies 
in the east. 

Futiih Misr wa'1-Maghrib: "Conquests of Egypt and the Maghrib" by 
Ibn 'Abd al-Hakam (d. 257/871). He was devoted to the study of 
hadith and his account of the conquests of Egypt and the Maghrib is 
one of a traditionist, giving the isnad of each piece of information. It 
is translated into French by Gateau as Conquete de VAfrique du 
Nord et de I'Espagne. It is also translated into Spanish by E. Vidal 

al-Imama wa's-Siyasa: "The Imamate and Politics", attributed to Ibn 
Qutayba (d. 276/889), (although there is some debate about this.) It 
is also known as Ta'rlkh al-Khulafa'. It deals with the history of 
Islam under the Rashidun Khalifs and Umayyads, with some obser- 
vations on the * Abbasids. 



al-Kamil fi't-Ta'rikh: "The Complete Book on History" by Ibn al-Athir 
(d. 630/1233) Begun as an abridgement of at-Tabari's Tarikh, it is 
one of the best known and most impartial and readable accounts. He 
continued on from at-Tabari until 628/1 230- 1. He does not mention 
his sources for the last 300 years. The passages which deal with 
North Africa and Spain were translated into French by E. Fagnan as 
Annates du Maghreb et de I'Espagne. 

Kitab al-Bayan al-Mughrib: "The Astonishing Explanation of the 
Kings of Spain and North Africa" by Ibn 'Idhari al-Marrakushi (late 
7th/13th cent). It is one of the best sources of information, being a 
compilation of earlier books, 

Kitab al-Masalik wa'I-Mamalik: "Book of Routes and Realms" by al- 
Bakri (d. 487/1094). One of the most important sources for the his- 
tory of the western Sudan. There is a French translation by Monteil. 

Kitab as-Suluk: "Book of Entrance to the Knowledge of the Dynasties 
of the Kings" by al-Maqrlzi (d. 845/1441), a history of Egypt from 
Salah ad-din in 564/1169, with some introductory remarks on earlier 
times. It ends in 844/1440-1 and was continued by Ibn Taghribindl. 
So it is the complete history of the Ayyubids and Bahri Mamluks 
and part of the Burjl Mamluks. A lot of it is translated as Histoire 
des sultans mamluks de VEgypte by Quatremere. 

al-MaghazI: "Expeditions" by al-Waqidl (d. 207/823). An account of 
the military expeditions of the Prophet. He may well be earlier than 
Ibn Ishaq and his sources come from a different line than Ibn Ishaq. 

al-Muqaddima: by Ibn Khaldun (d. 808/1406), the "Introduction" to his 
universal history, Kitab al- 'Ibar. Kitab al- 'Ibar is particularly useful 
for North African history. The Muqaddima is translated by 

Muruj adh-Dhahab: by al-Mas'udl (d. 345-956). In it he describes his 
experience of various countries, peoples and climates. He chooses 
what was a more modern approach than at-Tabari and selects one 
version of an event. There is a partial translation as The Meadows of 
Gold and a full French translation called Les Prairies d'Or. 

Nafh at-Tib: by al-Maqqari (d. 1041/1631), it has been translated by P. 
de Gayangos as History of the Mohammaden Dynasties in Spain. 

Sira: by Ibn Hisham (d. 218/833). He re-worked the Kitab al-Maghazi 
of Ibn Ishaq, the earliest biography of the Prophet. It is one of the 


Tabaqat Ibn Sa'd 

best existing authorities on the life of the Prophet. It has been trans- 
lated into English by Guillaume. 

Tabaqat Ibn Sa'd: "Generations" by Muhammad ibn Sa'd (d. 230/844- 
5), a compilation of earlier information with biographies on the 
Prophet, the Companions and later generations. It is tradition-based. 
Volumes 7 and 8 have been published as The Men ofMadina, Vol. I 
and The Women ofMadina respectively. 

Tajarib al-Umam; "Experiences of the Nations" by (Ibn) Miskawayh 
(d. 421/1030). The first part is dependent on at-Tabari, but the later 
part extends to the death in 372/983 of the Buyid 'Adud ad-Dawla, 
whose confidant he was. From 340/951 he depends on eye-witness- 
es. The concluding part is available in translation as The Eclipse of 
the Abbasid Caliphate. 

Ta'rikh al-Islam: "The History of Islam" by adh-Dhahabl (d. 
748/1348), a very extensive work of history from which he extracted 
shorter works. One of them, Kitab Duwat al-Islam, is translated as 
Les dynasties d' Islam. His History does contain some things which 
are not mentioned in at-TabafL He relies a lot on the Tabaqat of as- 

Ta'rikh al-Khulafa': "The History of the Khalifs" by as-Suyuti (d. 
911/1505), a history of those called khalifs. The part covering the 
first khalifs has been published as The History of the Khalifahs who 
took the right way. 

Ta'rikh Madinat Dimashq: "History of the City of Damascus" by Ibn 
'Asakir (502/1106 - 572/1176), a local history of Damascus which 
is very biographical. 

Ta'rikh at-Tabarf: his "World History" which covers Biblical Prophets, 
early rulers, Sasanian history and Islamic history, ending at 310/922. 
It is very detailed, but it should be noted that at-Tabari had pro-Alid 
sympathies. He also follows the manner of the traditionists, and 
gives all versions of an event which he has. It has been translated by 
various authors as a series. 

Ta'rikh al-Umam: "History of Kings of the Earth and Prophets" by 
Hamza al-Isfahani (d. 356/967). It is rather like a textbook which 
covers the history of past peoples. He is very careful about his 



Wafayat al-A*yan: "Deaths of Notables and News of the Sons of the 
Times " written by Ibn Khallikan between 654/1256 and 672/1274. 
A biographical dictionary written in the Mamluk period. It is valu- 
able because he used sources which are now lost. There is an old 
English translation by de Slane called Ibn Khallikan' s Biographical 

Waq'at Siffin: "The Battle of Siffin" by Nasr ibn Muzahim (d. 
212/827). The earliest Shi'ite historical source, which is an account 
of the battle between Mu'awiya and *Ali in 37/657. 

az-Zahira fl Muluk Misr wa'1-Qahira: "The Brilliant Stars in the 
Kings of Egypt and Cairo" by Ibn TaghribirdI, covers Egyptian his- 
tory from the Arab conquest to 872/1468. A translation of the period 
dealing with the Circassian Mamluks (784/1382 - 872/1468) has 
been translated by William Popper as History of Egypt. 



akhbar al-ghayb: Prophetical reports of previously unrecorded events. 

Akhira: the Next World, what is on the other side of death, the 
Hereafter, the dimension of existence after this world. 

'Arsh: the Throne. It is the ceiling of all creatures and the greatest of 
them. The Throne contains immense expanses, height and resplen- 
dent beauty, but it is beyond the power of any human being to 
describe it or imagine its form. Knowledge of it is with Allah alone. 
The light of the Throne is from the Light of the Noble Face of Allah. 
The Throne has bearers who carry it and Allah Almighty is settled 
on it, in a way that is beyond definition or concept. 

Ashab al-Mash'ama: "the Companions of the Left", the people of the 
Fire (See Qur'an 56:9). 

Ashab al-Maymana: "the Companions of the Right", the people of the 
Garden (See Qur'an 56:8). 

'Azra'Il: the Angel of Death, one of the four archangels. 

Bab ar-Rayyan: 'The Gate of the Well-Watered", a special gate of the 
Garden by which the people of fasting enter. 

barzakh: the interspatial life in the grave between death in this world 
and resurrection on the Day of Rising. 

ba'th: the arousing or bringing the dead back to life at the end of the 

al-Bayt al-Ma'mur: "the Visited House", Allah's House above the sev- 
enth heaven. 

dabba: the beast which will arise from the earth, (see Qur'an 27:82). It 
is one of the signs of the approach of the Last Hour. 

Dajjal: the false Messiah whose appearance marks the imminent end of 
the world. The Arabic root means "to deceive, cheat, take in". 

Dukhan: "smoke"; the name of Sura 44 of the Qur'an, one of the signs 
before the End of the world. 

Firdaws: Paradise. 



al-fitan wa ashrat as-sa'a: the trials and the signs of the Hour. Also 

known as ayat as-sa'a, "the signs of the Hour". 
al"Ghashiya: "The Overwhelmer", one of the names for the Day of 

Judgement and the name of Sura 88 of the Qur'an. 
al-ghurr al-muhajjalun: "those with shining white on their foreheads, 

wrists and ankles", a name that will be given on the Day of 

Resurrection to the Muslims because the parts of their bodies which 

they used to wash in ablution will shine then. 
Hamalat al-'Arsh: "the bearers of the Throne", the eight angels who 

are the bearers of the Divine Throne. 
Harut and Marut: the two angels mentioned in the Qur'an (2:102) in 

Babel from whom people learned magic. Some commentators state 

that they are two kings rather than two angels (malik rather than 

Hawd: the watering-place or Basin of the Prophet in the Next World, 

whose drink will refresh those who have crossed the Sirat before 

entering the Garden. 

al-Hawiya: the abyss, bottomless pit, Hell 

al-Hutama: "that which breaks to pieces", the seventh and deepest level 

of the Fire (See Qur'an 104:4-9). 
houri: see hur. 
hur: houris, pure maidens in Paradise, literally "the white ones", often 

said to refer to the contrast between the intense white and the 

intense blackness of the eyes, or it means having eyes like gazelles. 

The singular is hawra". 
Iblis: the personal name of the Devil. He is also called Shaytan or the 

"enemy of Allah". 
'Uliyun: "the High Places", a name for the upper part of the Heavens, 

where the register of people's good actions are kept, or a name for 

the register itself. (See Qur'an 83:18-19). 
Israffl: the archangel who will blow the Trumpet to announce the end of 

the world. 
Jahannam: Hell, Gehenna. 
al-Jahlm: Hellfire. 
Janna: the Garden, Heaven, Paradise. 



Jibrll: or Jibra'Il, the angel Gabriel who brought the revelation of the 
Qur'an to the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant 
him peace. 

jinn: a class of being created from smokeless fire who are generally 
invisible to human beings. There are many types of them, like the 
'ifrit and the ghul, which lures travellers to their death in the wilder- 

al-Karrubiyun: the Cherubim, the angels who are the closest to the 
Throne-bearers and praise Allah constantly night and day. Their 
name is either derived from karb or "sorrow", because of the inten- 
sity of their fear of Allah, or from kurb, meaning "nearness" and 
"strength" because of their constancy in worship. 

al-Kathib: the Slipping Sand-Heap, the heap where all souls will assem- 
ble in the Next World, each taking its place according to its spiritual 

katibun: the recording angels. (See Qur'an 82:10-12). 

Kawthar: "Abundance", a river in the Garden. 

kiram katibin: "the noble scribes", the two angels who sit on the human 
being's shoulders to record his actions. (See Qur'an 82:11). 

kismet: this word for "fate" comes from the Arabic qisma, meaning 
"part" or "portion", and was changed via Persian and Turkish. 

al-Kursi: the Footstool (as distinct from the Throne ( c Arsh)) although 
the Ayat al-Kursi (2:255) is referred to as the Throne verse. The 
Footstool is 'under' the Throne and is far smaller than it, "like a ring 
lying buried in the middle of the desert" (hadfth). The place of the 
Divine Command and Prohibition, the realm of the universe and the 
seven heavens, in both the Seen and the Unseen. 

al-Lawh al-Mahfuz: the Preserved Tablet in the Unseen which is also 
referred to as the Umm al-Kitab, the place of recording what will be, 
the repository of Destiny. 

al-Ma'ad: "the returning" to life after death; the life-to-come; the 

al-Mahdl: "the Divinely Guided", the descendant of the Prophet who 
will return at the end of time to establish justice. 

mahshar: the place of gathering on the Day of Judgement. 

al-Mala' al-A'la: the heavenly host, the angels. 



mala'ika: angels, the plural of malak (muqarrabun'. the angels brought 
near to Allah; al-karrubiyun (Cherubim) who praise Allah constant- 
ly night and day); hafiz.un (guardian angels). The ten individual 
angels mentioned are Jibril, Mika'Il, Israfil, 'AzraTl, Munkar, Nakir, 
Ridwan, Malik, and the two guardian angels who record each per- 
son' s actions. 

Malakut: the angelic world. 

Malik: the angel in charge of Hell- 
Malik al-Mawt: the Angel of Death, ' Azra'il. 

al-Maqam al-Mahmud: the highest place in Paradise, which will be 
granted to the Prophet Muhammad and none else, 

marid: a strong and rebellious type of jinn. 

al-Masih: the Messiah, Isa son of Maryam. 

al-Masfh ad-Dajjal: the anti-Messiah, the Antichrist. 

mawazTn: the plural of mizan, the scales or balances set up to weigh 
people's actions on the Day of Judgement. 

Mawqif: "the Standing" for judgement on the Day of Rising. 

Mika'Il: the archangel Michael. He is entrusted with the rain, wind and 
clouds by which land, plants and animals are brought to life. 

Munkar and Nakir: the two angels who come to question a person in 
the grave about his or her beliefs and actions while in this world. 

muqarrabun: "those who are drawn near", those who are nearest to 
Allah. The angels who are muqarrabun are also called al- 'alawiyun, 
"the highest". 

nafkha: a blast of the Trumpet. There will be two blasts. At the first all 
in the heaven and earth will die, and at the second all will rise. 

an-Nar: the Fire, Hell. 

al-Qari'a: "The Crashing Blow", one of the names of the Last Day and 
the name of Sura 101 of the Qur'an. 

al»Qiyama: the arising and standing of people at the Resurrection, and 
the name of Sum 75 of the Qur'an. 

ar-Rayyan: the name of one of the gates of Paradise through which only 
the people who often observe fasting will enter. Once all the fasters 
have entered it, it will be locked. 



Ridwan: the angel in charge of admitting people to the Garden. 

as-Sa'a: the Final Hour (the Day of Judgement). 

sabiqun: "those who outstrip the rest", in drawing near to Allah, 

sahib ash-shimal: "companion of the left", one of the recording angels; 

also an inhabitant of the Fire. 
sahib as-Sur: "the possessor of the Trumpet", meaning the angel Israfil. 
sahib al-yamin: "companion of the right", one of the recording angels; 

also an inhabitant of the Garden. 
as-Sa'Ir: raging fire, a name for Hell. 
Salsabil: the name of a fountain in Paradise mentioned in the Qur J an in 

Saqar: scorching Fire, a name for Hell, 
shafa'a: intercession, particularly the intercession of the Prophet 

Muhammad on the Last Day. 
Sidrat al-Muntaha: 'The Lote-Tree of the Boundary'* or "Lote Tree of 

the Uttermost Limit", a lote tree above the seventh heaven near the 

Paradise, denoting the limit of Being and the cessation of form 

itself; the place at which the knowledge of every creature, even the 

angels close to Allah, stops. (See Qur'an 53:14). 
Sijjln: the register where the actions of the evil are recorded, or the 

place where the register is kept. Some say it is a stone underneath 

the lowest earth. (See Qur'an 83:7-8) 
Sirat: the narrow bridge which spans the Fire and must be crossed to 

enter the Garden. It is described as sharper than a sword and thinner 

than a hair. It will have hooks over it to catch people as they cross it. 
Tasnlm: the name of a fountain in Paradise. 
Tuba: a state of blessedness in the Garden. 
Yajuj wa Majuj: (or Ya'juj wa Ma'juj) the people of Gog and Magog 

who are to burst forth near the end of time to wreak destruction. 
Yawm al-Ba'th: the Day of Rising, another name for the Day of 

Yawm ad-Din: the Day of Judgement. 
Yawm al-Fasl: "the Day of Dividing", another name for the Day of 

Yawm al-Hisab: "The Day of Reckoning". 



Yawm al-Qiyama: "the Day of Rising", the Day of Standing. 
Zabaniya: "the violent thrusters", the angels who thrust people into 

Hellfire, who are nineteen in number. 
az-Zaqqum: a tree with bitter fruit which grows at the bottom of the 

Fire. Its fruit resembles the heads of devils. 


Terms relating to Morals and Ethics 

a dab: correct behaviour, both inward and outward, good deportment. 
adib: someone who is characterised by adab, someone well-disciplined. 
'adl: justice, fairness, equitableness, the mean between excess and 

falling short. 
akhlaq: the plural of khuluq, meaning trait of character. In the plural it 

means ethics, morality. The Prophet said, "I was sent to perfect good 

character {akhlaq)." 
amah false hope, remote expectation, as in having a false expectation of 

the importance of worldly things; or else true hope in Allah. 
al-Amana: the trust, or moral responsibility or honesty, and all the 

duties which Allah has ordained. (See Qur'an 33:72). Amana also 

means trustworthiness, faithfulness, honesty. 
amin (plural umana'): a trustworthy person. The Prophet was known as 

barr: pious, dutiful to one's parents; one who behaves with kindness 

and gentleness and is truthful. 
basira: insight, discernment. 
birr: kindness, solicitous regard for parents and others, piety towards 

Allah, gentle behaviour and regard for others, obedience to Allah. 
bukhl: niggardliness, stinginess, avarice; denying the poor any one's 

excess wealth; withholding that which it is not lawful to withhold. 

daha' : political finesse which consists of intelligence combined with 

cunning and accurate forward planning. 
dunya: this world, not as a cosmic phenomenon, but as imagined and 

experienced. (See khayal). 
fada'il: virtues, excellent qualities. It is the plural of fadila. 
fahsha': something abominable or obscene, meaning anything forbidden 

by Allah. It can also designate fornication or foul language. 



faqih an-nafs: "an expert on the self', a term used by al-Ghazall for 
someone with expertise and understanding of the art of purifying the 

fasiq (plural fussaq): sinner, deviant, fornicater, profligate. 

firasa: the science of recognising a person's inward qualities by study- 
ing the outward appearance; intuitive knowledge of human nature. 

fisq: deviant behaviour, leaving the correct way or abandoning the truth, 
disobeying Allah, immoral behaviour. 

fitra: the first nature; the natural, primal condition of mankind in harmo- 
ny with nature. 

furqan: discrimination, distinguishing the true from the false. It is also a 
name given to a Divine revealed book. 

futuwwa: chivalry; placing others above one's self as manifested in gen- 
erosity, altruism, self-denial, indulgence for people's shortcomings. 
Also a term for the guilds in Asia Minor. 

ghadd al-basar: lowering the eyes, a virtue required in the presence of 
members of the opposite sex. 

al-ghazw al-fikrl: cultural aggression. 

ghlba: backbiting, slander, mentioning anything about a person that he 
would dislike to hear, even if it is true. 

ghibta: the desire for a blessing which someone else has without desir- 
ing that it should pass away from the person who has it. 

ghlra: This word covers a wide range of meanings: it can mean jealousy 
as regards women and it is also a feeling of great fury and anger 
when one' s honour and prestige is injured or challenged. It can be 
positive or negative depending on the circumstances. 

ghurfir: self-delusion, beguilement, as when someone is deceived by the 
appearance of worldly things or by Shay tan. 

hadith an-nafs: the chatter of the self which goes on inside one's head. 

hasad: envy of what someone else has and wishing that they did not 
possess it and would lose it. (Compare with ghibta), 

hasana (plural hasanat): a good deed. 

haw a: passion, desire (usually not praiseworthy) for self-gratification, 
inclination to something enjoyed by animal appetites; also used in 
the plural {ahwa '), meaning opinions which have moved away from 
the truth. 



haya': this denotes a cluster of several concepts: modesty, diffidence, 
shyness, self-respect, scruples. 

hikma: wisdom, that which acts as a curb and prevents a person from 
ignorant behaviour; knowledge of the true nature of things and act- 
ing accordingly. 

hilni: forbearance, self-restraint. 

ihsan: virtue, doing the best. 

Lhtimal: endurance, forbearance. 

ikhlas: sincerity, pure unadulterated genuineness. 

iqtisad: moderation, adopting a middle course, being frugal. In modern 
terms, it is used to mean 'economics' . 

istiqama: rectitude, lightness, integrity, the state of being correct and 
sound in one's being and behaviour. 

istiqrar: persistence, stability, constancy. 

istislam: submission, acceptance. 

ithar: altruism, putting others before oneself. 

ithm: wilful transgression, sin. 

jahl: ignorance, lack of knowledge, also rashness, arrogance. 

karam: nobility. 

madhmum: blameworthy. 

mahmud: praiseworthy, commendable. 

manaqib: virtues, glorious deeds. 

muhasaba: self-examination, examining one's deeds and taking account 
of them. 

muhsin (plural muhsinun): someone who does what is good. 

munkar: any action or behaviour which is unacceptable or disapproved 
of by sound intellects; anything which is declared to be hateful, 
unseemly, foul, immoral, objectionable or reprehensible. 

muru'a: manly virtue or moral probity, behaving in a manner which 
comprises all the virtues: manliness, courage, generosity, honour, 
refraining from doing secretly what one would be ashamed to do 
publicly, etc. 

mutafahtush: a person who conveys evil talk. 

nafth: literally "spitting", often meaning to cast something into the 



namima: tale-bearing, to quote someone's words to another in a way 
that worsens relations between them. 

nasiha (plural nasa'ih): good advice, sincere conduct. 

nifaq: hypocrisy. 

qina'a: contentedness, frugality and temperance; being satisfied with 
what one has, 

r a lima: mercy. 

rayb: a doubt which creates disquiet, mental agitation, and suspicion. 

rida: being well-pleased and content with what Allah decrees. 

riya': showing off, doing actions for the sake of being seen to do them. 

riya da: self-discipline, training and discipline. 

sa'ada: happiness. 

sabr: patience, fortitude, steadfastness. 

sahr: sleeplessness. 

saklna: an enveloping stillness which Allah sends down on the hearts. 

salah: goodness, righteousness, virtue. 

salihat: righteous actions, good deeds. 

shahwa: appetite, passion, desire, sexual and aggressive instincts. 

shakk: doubt. 

shukr: thankfulness, gratitude. 

siddiq: a man of truth, sincerity is his condition, a name of respect given 
to Abu Bakr. 

sidq: truthfulness. 

siyar: types of conduct. 

tabl'a: nature, natural constitution, the aggregate of the natural con- 
stituent parts of something. 

tadblr: management, planning; to study, consider and comprehend 
something and then act accordingly. 

ta'dib: reprimand. 

tahdhib: refining and improving character. 

taqwa: fearful awareness of Allah and acting accordingly. 

tarbiya: education. 

tawadu': humility. 



tawakkul: confidently putting one's trust and reliance in Allah. It is the 
realisation that Allah provides for you, 

tazkiya: "purification" in a moral and ethical sense, the continual psy- 
chological and moral process of purifying the soul of base qualities 
and desires. It is commanded in the Qur'an in 91:7-10. 

thabat: steadfastness; possessing steadiness in battle or speech and self- 

uns: fellowship, sociableness, inclination to company. 

wafa ? : faithfulness, fidelity, discharging obligations and living up to 

wara': scrupulousness, being cautious about one's actions. 

wasil: one who keeps good relations with his kith and kin. 


Specific Topics 

Qur'anic Terms 

Hadith Terms 


Kalam and Philosophy 


Terms related to Qur'anic recitation or tafsir 

adab of Qur'an recitation: the adab of Qur'an recitation includes the 

following: the intention should be sincerely for Allah and not to 

please others; the reciter must be pure in body, clothes and place; 

one begins by seeking refuge with Allah; it should be done with fear 

and humility and distinct pronunciation, and with awareness of the 

meanings of what is being recited; the recitation should be neither 

too soft nor too loud. 
ahkam al-Qur'an: legal judgements which are derived from the Qur'an. 
ahruf: the seven different modes in which the Qur'an was revealed. 
'amrn: generally applicable, in reference to a Qur'anic ruling. 
aqlab: modification. This occurs when nun or tanwln is followed by ba\ 

The nun becomes a mim. Thus min ba 'd becomes mim ba f d. 
asbab an-nuzul: the historical circumstances leading up to a revelation 

or in which particular ay at were revealed; situational exegesis, 
a^udhu billahi min ash-shay tan ar-rajim: the Arabic expression "I 

seek protection in Allah from the accursed Shaytan." One says this 

before beginning to recite the Qur'an. 
aya(t) (plural ay at): verse of the Qur'an; a sign of Allah. 
Ayat al-Ahkam: verses which give rulings with a legal connotation. 
Ayat al-KursI: the Throne Verse: Qur'an 2:255. Also called Ayat al- 

Hife, the Ayat of Preservation. (See Kurst) 
Ayat as-Sayf: the Verse of the Sword: Qur'an 9:5. 
balagha: the clear and perspicuous style of the Qur'an. 
basmala: the expression, "In the name of Allah, the All-Merciful, the 

batin: inwardly hidden, 
batini: inward, esoteric. 
bayan: clarification, elucidation: either of the substance of a meaning in 

the Qur'an or of the meaning of that substance. 



bayyina (plural bayyinat): a piece of evidence which is clear and 
demonstrates the truth; testimony. Such clear demonstrative evi- 
dence reinforces belief. Bayyinat can be either verses of the Qur'an 
or natural phenomena. 

bismi'Uah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim: the basmala: "In the name of Allah, 
the All-Merciful, the All-Compassionate". 

al-Buruj: the the Constellations of the Zodiac; the name of Sura 85 of 
the Qur'an. 

dhikru'llah: "remembrance of Allah". 

diraya: deduction (as istinbat): analysis of Scripture. 

dukhan: "smoke", the name of Sura 44 of the Qur'an, one of the signs 
before the End of the world. 

fasila (plural fawasit): the final words of the verses of the Qur'an which 
resemble rhyme. 

Fattha: the first sura of the Qur'an. 

al-Furqan: that which separates truth from falsehood; hence the Qur'an. 

ghara'ib al-Qur'an: the study of obscure or unusual words in the 
Qur' an. Ghard f ib is the plural of gharib. 

al-Ghashiya: "The Overwhelmer", one of the names for the Day of 
Judgement and the name of Sura 88 of the Qur'an. 

ghunna: nasalisation, to pronounce the letter from the nose, usually the 
letter nun or tanwin. 

hadhf: ellipsis. 

hadr: rapid recitation of Qur'an. 

hafiz: someone who has memorised the Qur'an. 

harf (plural ahruj)x one of the seven modes or manners of readings in 
which the Qur'an was revealed. 

harf wa jarh: "letters and sounds", the Qur'an when it is is articulated. 

Hawamim: the seven suras which begin with Ha Mini (40 - 46). 

hizb (plural ahzab): a sixtieth part of the Qur'an. 

huda: guidance; al-Huda is a name for the Qur'an. 

huruf al-muqatta'at (or huruf al-fawatihy. the opening letters at the 
beginning of twenty-nine siiras. Fourteen letters are used in various 
combinations. These fourteen are: alif, ha\ ra\ sin, shin, sad, ta\ 
'ayn t qdf, kqf t lam, mlm, nun, ha\ and ya\ 



'ibara an-nass: explicit meaning of a given text which is borne out by 

its words. 
idgham: In Qur'an recitation, to assimilate one letter into another. Thus 

an-ya'bud becomes ay-ya'bud, qad tabayyan becomes qat- 

tabayyan, etc. 
i'jaz: inimitability of the Qur'an. There have been three ways of stating 

it. The argument of sarfa: Allah turns people away from imitating 

the Qur'an, associated with the Mu'tazilite an-Nazzam (d. c. 

241/835); the contents of the Qur'an make it inimitable, stated by al- 

Jahiz (d. 271/864); and the third is based on the inimitability of the 

language itself, which no one can imitate even if they try to do so. 
ikhfa': not full articulation in recitation. 
iltitat: shift in talking in one person to another (i.e. from the singular to 

the plural). 
imala: "leaning forward", after soft consonants, e.g. in Allah and in 

lillah, the double / becomes softened and the following long a is 

subject to imala. 
imam: the codex of the Qur'an which 'Uthman had compiled and 

iqtida' an-nass: the required meaning of a given text. 
i'rab: grammatical inflection; the rules for the vowel endings. 
ishara an-nass: alluded meaning of a text. 

Isra'iliyat: Israelite traditions; pre-Islamic Biblical or other such materi- 
istinaf (or ibtida' in az-Zamafchshan): disjunctive syntax, meaning that 

the "wdw" begins an entirely new sentence. 
izhar: clear articulation of the letter without nasalisation. This occurs 

when nun or tanwln is followed by one of six guttural letters 

(hamza, ha\ 'ayn, ha\ gkayn and kka'). 
jahr: recitation of the Qur'an out loud during salat. 
jam': collection of the Qur'an into a single volume. 
jumal al-fara ? id: highly general statements in the Qur'an. 
juz 3 (plural ajza'): a thirtieth part of the Qur'an. 
kalam Allah: "the speech of Allah", e.g. the Qur'an. 
khail: hidden, obscure, also refers to a category of unclear words. 



khass: a text which is specifically applicable, particular. 

khatm: or khatma, lit, 'seal*; the recitation of the entire Qur'an from 
beginning to end. 

al-Kitab: "the Book"; e.g. the Qur'an. 

lafz (plural alfaz)\ actual articulated expression, 

lahn al-khitab: parallel meaning, if the understood meaning of a text is 
equivalent to the pronounced meaning. 

madda: prolongation. There are three letters which are subject to pro- 
longation in recitation of the Qur'an: alif, waw and yd'. 

mafhum al-mukhalafa: divergent meaning, an interpretation which 
diverges from the obvious meaning of a given text. 

ma Hi urn al-muwafaqa: harmonious meaning, an implied meaning 
which is equivalent to the pronounced text. 

mahdhuf: elided and implied, a rhetorical device. 

makharij: plural of makhraj? articulation, phonetics. 

mansfikh: what is abrogated or superseded, particularly with regard to 
earlier Qur'anic ay at and hadlth which were subsequently replaced 
by later ones, thereby altering the legal judgements or parameters 
which had initially been expressed in the earlier ones. 

maqlub: inversion, a type of metaphor. This can be by describing some- 
thing by its opposite (antiphrasis) and by a reversal of the natural 
order (hysteron proteron). 

mathal: parable, example. 

Mathani: lit. "the often recited", said to be the first long suras t or the 
Fatiha and also various other things. (See Qur'an 15:87), 

al-Mi'un: suras of a hundred ayat or more. 

mu'anaqa: "embracing" a word or phrase in the Qur'an which can be 
considered as referring to the preceding or the following word, e.g. 
In 2:2, jthi (therein) can refer to the word before, "la mybafihi" (No 
doubt in it) or to the word after, "fihi huda" (guidance in it). In some 
Qur'ans there are three dots before and after the phrase and mim- 
'ayn written in the margin. 

Mu*awwidhatan: the last two suras of the Qur'an, the two suras of 
seeking refuge with Allah from the evil which He has created, 

mubalagha: hyperbole. 



mubham: ambiguous, vague. 

Mufassal: the suras of the Qur'an starting from Surat Qaf (50) to the 
end of the Qur'an. 

mufassirun (singular mufassir): those who make tafsir. 

muhkam: perspicuous, a text conveying a firm and unequivocal mean- 

mu'jiza: miracle, something which it is usually impossible to accom- 
plish. This term is used for the miracles performed by the Prophets, 
The Qur'an is the greatest miracle of the Prophet. 

muqaddar: an implied text. It is not actually there, but implied byjhe 

mursalun: "those sent", meaning the Messengers. 

mushaf (plural masahif)i a copy of the Qur'an. 

mutashabih: intricate, unintelligible, referring to a word or text whose 
meaning is not totally clear. 

naskh: abrogation. 

naskh al-hukm wa't-tilawa: supersession of both the ruling and the 

naskh al-hukm duna't-tilawa: supersession of the ruling but not the 

nass: unequivocal, clear injunction, an explicit textual meaning. 

nisf:half of aj«z\ 

nujum: instalments in the Revelation (as opposed to its being revealed 
all at once). 

nuzul: the revelation of the Qur'an. 

parah: Persian and Urdu for juz'. 

qari' (plural qurra'): one who recites the Qur'an. 

al-Qari'a: "The Crashing Blow", one of the names of the Last Day and 
the name of Sura 101 of the Qur'an. 

qira'a (plural qira'at): the method of recitation, punctuation and locali- 
sation of the Qur'an. There are seven main readings: Abu 'Amr ibn 
al-'Ala', Hamza, 'Asim, Ibn 'Amir, Ibn Kathir, Nafi' and al-Kisa'I. 
The two most used today are the qira'a of 'Asim in the riwaya of 
Hafs (d. 190/805) and that of Nafi' in the riwaya of Warsh (d. 



al-qira'at as-sab': the seven accepted variant readings of the Qur'an. 
Also the title of a famous book on the subject by Ibn Mujahid. 

qisas al-anbiya': stories of the Prophets. 

qurra': the plural of qari\ Qur'an reciter. There is sometimes confusion 
about whom is being referred to when this term is used because 
qurra 1 is also used to designate those who had not taken part in the 
Ridda, namely the AM al-Qura, or "people of the towns". 

rasm: the orthography of the Qur'an; the usage of the letters in copies of 
the Qur'an where they are written differently than the normal writ- 
ten usage. 

rawl (plural ruwa): transmitter. 

riwaya: transmission of a particular reading of the Qur'an. Hafs and 
Warsh are the most in use today. 

rub': a quarter of ajuz'- 

Ruh al-Qudus: "the Spirit of Purity", the angel JibriL 

Sab* al-Mathani: 'the seven often repeated ones/ usually meaning the 
seven ayat of the Fatiha. 

Sab* at-Tiwal: the first seven long suras of the Qur'an. 

saj': rhymed prose in which consecutive clauses end in a similar sound 
but not in a similar poetic measure. 

saklna: calmness, tranquillity, the Shechina (See Qur'an 2:248). 

shadhdh: one of the rarer readings of the Qur'an. 

shahid: singular of shawdhid. 

shawahid: illustrations from Arabic poetry or other quotations to illus- 
trate an uncertain linguistic usage. 

sila: elision. 

sirrl: silent recitation of the Qur'an during salat. 

siyaq: context. 

suhuf: pages, books, epistles, the plural of sahifa; the suhuf of Ibrahim 
and Musa means the Revelations which they received. (See Qur'an 

sura (plural suwar): chapter of the Qur'an, The Qur'an is composed of 
1 14 suras. 

suwar: plural of sum. 

tadwir: medium speed recitation of Qur'an. 



tafsir: commentary of explanation of the meanings of the Qur'an. Firstly 
there is tafsir bVl-ma'thur {tafsir by what has been transmitted, as is 
seen in the tafsir of Ibn Kathir), which conveys past opinions and 
secondly tafsir bi'l-ma 'qui wa bVd-daraya {tafsir by logic and com- 
prehension), which involves interpretation. The second form of 
tafsir is further divided into at-Tafslr al-Lughawi (linguistic tafsir as 
in al-Kashshaf); at-ta'wfl, falsafa wa't-tasawwuf (allegorical, philo- 
sophical and Sufic like Mafatih al-Ghayb of ar-Razi); al-Isra'iliydt 
(based on Jewish sources, like Tafsir Ibn Hayyan); Tafsir ayat al- 
ahkam (verses which contains judgements (like Ahkam al-Qur'an by 
Ibn al-'Arabi); tafsir ar-riwaya wa'd-daraya ( commentary through 
narration and proof like Tafsir Ibn Kathir), and tafsir bi'r-ra'y, 
based on individual interpretation. 

tahaddl: the challenge issued to people to compose something like the 
Qur'an. No one has been able to do so. 

tahrlf: distortion, perversion of the meaning of something or miscon- 
struing it, also altering the pronunciation of a word to alter its mean- 

tajwid: the art of reciting the Qur'an, giving each consonant its full 

takrar: repetition. 

tanjlm: graduality of revelation as it is revealed in stages. 

tanwln: nunnation. 

tanzll: "sending down", revelation. 

taqdini wa ta'khir: "advancing and delaying"; a common rhetorical 
device in the Qur'an in which the normal order is reversed with 
what should come last coming first, transposition. Grammatically 
this figure of speech is called a hysteron proteron. (See maqlub). 

taqdir: restoring the full meaning of the text by holding certain 'miss- 
ing' words to be 'understood'. 

ta'rid: allusion by way of euphemism or circumspection. 

tariq (plural turuq): one of the transmissions of a particular riwaya, 

tartlb an-nuzul: the order of revelation. 

tar fib at-tilawa: the order of recitation. 

tiirtll: slow recitation of the Qur'an. 

tatbiq: parallelism. 



ta'wfl: interpretation, allegorical interpretation. 

tawkid: emphasis. 

tawriya: synonym of ta'rid. 

thumn: an eighth of ajuz'. 

tilawa: recitation of the Qur'an. 

at-Tiwal: the long suras. 

'ulum al-Qur'an: "the sciences of the Qur'an". 

Umm al-Qur'an: "the Mother of the Qur'an", the opening sura of the 
Qur'an which is called al-Fatiha. Also said to be its source in the 

wahy: revelation. 

wajh (plural wujiih): aspect. 

waqf: a stop in recitation. There are various signs which indicate differ- 
ent weights of stopping when reciting the Qur'an. A necessary stop 
is indicated in Hafs by a mim, and by a sad in Warsh. 

Ya Sin: Sura 36, the heart of the Qur'an. 

zahir: apparent, probablistic, a zahir text can mean one of two or more 

zawahir: plural of zahir. 

ziyada: pleonastic embellishment, the addition of a superfluous word or 
preposition which has no effect on the actual meaning. 


Prophets, Places and and People 
Mentioned in the Qur'an 

'Ad: an ancient people in southern Arabia to whom the Prophet Hud 
was sent. It takes its name from 'Ad, who was in the fourth genera- 
tion after Nuh (the son of 'Aws son of Aram son of Sam son of 
Nuh). They were prosperous, tall in stature and great builders. It is 
possible that the tracts of sands (al-Ahqaf, Qur'an 46:21) where they 
lived were irrigated. They had become haughty and disobedient to 
Allah, and suffered first a three year drought and then Allah 
destroyed them with a violent destructive westerly wind. Their city 
was possibly Iram of the Pillars, {See Qur'an 89:6-8). 

' Adn: Eden, part of Paradise. 

Alaysa': a disciple of Ilyas, the Prophet Elisha. 

al-Ahqaf: "the Sand Dunes", the tracts of sand dunes where the people 
of 4 Ad lived, next to Hadramawt and Yemen. Also the title of Sura 
46 of the Qur'an. 

Asbat: Tribes (of Israel). 

Ashab al-Ayka: "the People of the Thicket". Ayka may be a place or a 
description. Their prophet was Shu'ayb and the description of them 
corresponds to the people of Madyan. 

Ashab al-Kahf: the Seven Sleepers, the seven believers who slept for 
309 years (in a cave near Ephesus) and who attained high status 
because of their emigrating to another place in order not to lose their 
faith when disbelievers invaded their land. Mentioned in Surat 18:9- 
27 of the Qur'an. 

Ashab al-Ukhdud: the people of the Ditch, the Christians of Najran 
who were burned alive by Dml Nuwas in Yemen in about 525 CE 
after he had failed to force them to convert to Judaism. (See Qur'an 



Asiya: the wife of Pharaoh mentioned in the Qur'an in 66:11. She is 
considered to be one of the four perfect women, (the others being 
Maryam, Khadlja and Fatima). 

Ayyub: the Prophet Job. 

Azar: the father of the Prophet Ibrahim. His name was Terah (or Tarah). 
Various explanations were given for this: either it was a nickname or 
a title. 

al-'Aziz: "the notable", the title of the high court official of Egypt who 
purchased the Prophet Yusuf - and whom the Prophet Yusuf even- 
tually became. 

Bakka: the ancient name of Makka. 

Bilqis: the Queen of Saba' or Sheba. 

Binyamin: Benjamin, the younger brother of the Prophet Yusuf. 

Da'ud: the Prophet David. "The fast of Da'ud* is to fast every other day. 

Dhu'1-Kifl: a Prophet mentioned in the Qur'an in 21:85, possibly 

DmVn-Nun: "He of the Whale", Jonah or Yunus. 

Dhu'l-Qarnayn: "the two-horned", a name given to a great ruler in the 
past who ruled all over the world, and was a true believer. It is often 
thought to refer to Alexander the Great. His story is mentioned in 
the Qur'an (18:83-99). 

Fir'awn: Pharaoh. 

Habil and Qabfl: Cain and Abel. 

Hajar: Hagar, the mother of Isma'Tl, from whom the Prophet Muham- 
mad is descended, 

Hainan: the minister of Pharaoh mentioned in the Qur'an. 

Hanna: Anna, the name given by commentators for the wife of 'Imran 
and the mother of Maryam. 

Harun: the Prophet Aaron, the brother of Miisa. 

Harut and IVfarut: the two angels mentioned in the Qur'an (2:102) in 
Babel from whom people learned magic. Some commentators state 
that they are two kings rather than two angels. 

hawariyyun: the disciples of the Prophet 'Isa. 

Hawwa': Eve. This name appears in Badlth. 



al-Hijr: "the rocky tract", a town in Arabia about 150 miles north of 

Madina, where the people of Thamud lived. Also the title of Sura 15 

of the Qur'an. 
Hud: the Prophet sent to the people of 'Ad. His tomb is traditionally 

located in Hadramawt. 
hudhud: the hoopoe, mentioned in the Qur'an (27:20-22). 
hiir: the plural of hawra\ the maidens in Paradise, the black iris of 

whose eyes is in strong contrast to the clear white around it. 
Iblfs: the personal name of the Devil. It means "seized by despair". He 

is also called Shaytan or the "enemy of Allah". 
Ibrahim: the Prophet Abraham. 
Idris: the Prophet, possibly Enoch. 
Hyas: also Ilyasin, the Prophet Elijah or Elias. 
'Imran: the Biblical Amran, the father of Musa and Harun. Also the 

name of Maryam's father. 
InjH: the Gospel, the revelation given to the Prophet isa. 
Irani: possibly Aram, probably in reference to the Aramaeans; or else 

the dam of Iram which engulfed the ancient city of Ma'rib in Yemen 

in about 120 CE, the city from which it is said Bilqls originally 

Irmlya': Jeremiah. 
'Isa: the Prophet Jesus. 
Ishaq: the Prophet Isaac. 
LshbiV: Elizabeth, the name given by various commentators for the 

mother of the Prophet Yahya. 
Isma'Il: the Prophet Ishmael. 
Israfik the archangel who will blow the Trumpet to announce the end of 

the world. 
Isra'il: Israel, the Prophet Ya'qub or Jacob, 
Jahannam: Hell, Gehenna. 
Jalut: the Biblical Goliath. 
Janna: the Garden, Paradise. 
JibrH: or Jibra'il, the angel Gabriel who brought the revelation of the 

Qur'an to the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant 

him peace. 



JudI: Mount Ararat, where the Ark landed. 

Kalimatu'Uah: "the word of Allah", meaning the Prophet 'Isa. 

Kalimu'llah: "the one to whom Allah spoke directly", a title of the 

Prophet Musa. 
Kawthar: "Abundance", a river in the Garden; also the name of Sura 

Khalil: "Friend", a title of the Prophet Ibrahim. 
Laylat al-Qadr: the Night of Power, mentioned in Sura 97 of the 

Luqman: a figure in the Qur'an, a sage, the source, some say, of 

Aesop's fables, 
Lut: the Prophet Lot. 

Madyan: Midian, the people to whom the Prophet Shu'ayb was sent. 
Ma jus: Magians, Zoroastrians. 
Marut: see Hdrut andMaruL 
Maryam: Mary, the mother of 'Isa, 
al-Masih: the Messiah, 'Isa, son of Maryam. 
Mika'H: (or Mikal), the archangel Michael. 
Musa: the Prophet Moses. 
al-Mu'tafika: "the Overwhelmed Ones", the cities of Sodom and 

Nar: the Fire, Hell. 
Nuh: the Prophet Noah. 
Qarun: the Biblical Korah, mentioned in Sura 28:76-84. He was famed 

for his incredible wealth and became arrogant on account of it. 

Allah caused the earth to swallow him up. 
Qitmir: the traditional name given to the dog of the Seven Sleepers. 

(See Ashab al-Kahf). 
Qiyama: the arising of people at the Resurrection on the Last Day. 
ar-Raqim: the tablet which contained the story of the Seven Sleepers, or 

possibly the name of their dog. (See QitmTr). 
ar-Rass: "the men of ar-Rass", a people mentioned in the Qur'an who 

were destroyed. Ar-Rass is possibly the name of a well. 
ar-Ruh al-Amln: "the Trusty Spirit," meaning Jibril; also known as ar- 

Ruh al-Qudus, "the Spirit of Purity". 



Saba: Sheba. 

Sabi'un: Sabeans, a group of believers. It is not entirely clear who they 

were. Possibly they were Gnostics or Mandaeans. 
Sahib al-Hut: "the man of the fish", the Prophet Yunus. 
Salih: the Prophet sent to the people of Thamud. 
SalsabU: the name of a fountain in Paradise mentioned in the Qur'an in 

as-Samiri: the Samaritan who made the Golden Calf. 
Saqar: a place in Hell. 
Sara: Sarah, the mother of Ishaq, from whom the Prophet 'Isa is 

Seven Sleepers: the People of the Cave mentioned in Sura 18 who are 

known as the "Seven Sleepers of Ephesus." (See Ashab al-Kahj). 
Shu'ayb: the Prophet Jethro. 
Sidrat al-Muntaha: '"The Lote-Tree of the Boundary" or "Lote Tree of 

the Uttermost Limit", a lote tree above the seventh heaven near the 

Paradise, denoting the limit of Being and the cessation of form 

itself; the place at which the knowledge of every creature, even the 

angels close to Allah, stops. (See Qur'an 53:14). 
Sulayman: the Prophet Solomon. 
Tabut: the Ark of the Covenant. 
Talut: the Israelite king Saul 

Tawra; the Torah, the Divine Revelation given to the Prophet Musa. 
Thamud: a people to whom the Prophet Salih was sent, possibly a 

group of Nabateans. Mada'in Salih is located at al-Hijr in Najd 

about 180 miles north of Madina. The inscriptions on the tombs 

there date from 3 BC to 79 CE which are probably after the culture 

which once flourished there was destroyed. 
Tuba: a state of blessedness in the Garden. 
Tubba': a South Arabian people, probably the Himyarites, of whom this 

was the title of their kings. 
at-Tur: the Mount, the name of Siira 52 of the Qur'an, refers to Mount 

Tuwa: the valley in which Allah spoke to Musa. 



ulu'l-'azm: "the Prophets with resolve", who are Adam, Nuh, Ibrahim, 

Musa, Isa and Muhammad. 
Umm al-Qura: Mother of cities, i.e. Makka. 
'Uzayr: Ezra. 
Yafith: Japheth. 

Yahya: the Prophet John the Baptist, the son of Zakariyya. 
Ya'qub: the Prophet Jacob, also called Isra'il 
al-Yasa': the Prophet Elisha. 
Yunus: the Prophet Jonah. 
Yusha': Joshua. 
Ytisuf: the Prophet Joseph. 
Zabaniya: "Violent thrusters", the angels who thrust people into 

Hellfire, who are nineteen in number. 
Zabur: the Psalms of Da'ud. 
Zakariyya: the Prophet Zacharia, the father of Yahya, John the Baptist, 

and guardian of Maryam. 
Zulaykha: the name given for the wife of the 'Aziz in the story of the 

Prophet Yusuf. 


Qur'anic commentators {Mufassiruri) 

'Abdullah ibn 'Abbas: ibn 'Abd al-Muttalib al-Hashimi, Abii'l- 'Abbas, 
the son of the uncle of the Prophet. He was born when the Banu 
Hashim were in the ravine three years before the Hijra. He is called 
the "sage of the Arabs," "the Sea" and the "Doctor (hibr) of the 
Community". He went on expeditions in North Africa with 
'Abdullah ibn 'Amr ibn al-'As in 27/647. He was tall with reddish 
fair skin and of heavy build. The Prophet made supplication for him, 
rubbed his head and spat into his mouth and said, "O Allah, give 
him understanding in the din and the knowledge of interpretation." 
He led the hajj in the year 'Uthman was murdered. He died in 
68/687-8 at the age of 71 in at-Ta'if. 

*AH ibn 'Isa ar-Rummam: a Mu'tazilite born in Iraq in 295/908 and 
died in 386/996. He wrote an-Nukaiji Vjaz al-Qur'an, the earliest 
complete text in support of the Vjaz al-Qur'an. 

Al-Baghawl: al-Husayn ibn Mas'ud, born in Bagha, an Imam in various 
fields. He was known to his contemporaries as "the Reviver of the 
Din". He has a sixteen volume Shark as-Sunna, dealing with Shafi'i 
fiqh and the basis for it. He has a tafsir entitled Lubab at-Ta'wil. He 
died in Marw in 510/11 17. 

al-Baqillani: Muhammad ibn at-Tayyib, the QadI and Imam of the peo- 
ple of the Stoma, d. 403/1013. He was born in Basra in 338/950 and 
became one of the foremost scholars in kalam. He was a MalikI 
faqih and an Ash'arite mutakallim. He wrote Vjaz al-Qur'an. He 
was sent by 'Adud ad-Dawla as an envoy to the Byzantines in 
Constantinople where he debated with Christian scholars in the pres- 
ence of the emperor. 

al-Baydawi: 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar, born in Bayda, near Shiraz. When 
"al-Qadi" (the Judge) is mentioned in tafsir,, he is the one who is 
meant. He was qadl in Shiraz for a time. His chief work was Anwar 
at-Tanzil He died in Tabriz in 685/1286, 


Ibn 'Atiyya 

Ibn 'Atiyya: Abu Muhammad 'Abdu'1-Haqq ibn Ghalib al-Andalusi 
(481/1088-9 - c. 542/1147). A North African who abridged all the 
commentaries and selected the most likely interpretations in al- 
Muharrir al-Wajiz. This book is in general circulation in the western 
Islamic world. Al-Qurtubi adopted his method. 

Ibn Juzayy: Muhammad ibn Ahmad, Abu'l-Qasim ibn Juzayy al-Kalbl 
of Granada, born in 693/1294, a Maliki scholar and Imam in tafsir 
and Jtqh. He wrote the well-known tafslr, at-Tashil fi 'Ulum at- 
Tanzil He died in 741/1340. 

Ibn Kathir: 'Imad ad-din Isma'il ibn 'Umar ibn KathTr, Abu'1-Fida', 
born in 701/1302 in a village outside Damascus. He moved to 
Damascus at the age of five. He was widely travelled and studied 
with many famous scholars, including Ibn Taymiyya. He was a 
SharTi scholar with books with expertise in various areas. He was 
greatly respected. He has a well-known tafsir. He has little respect 
for the intellectual tradition. He dislikes polyvalent readings and 
argues for a single 'correct* reading and hence he is somewhat dog- 
matic: it might even be said that he impoverishes the text by remov- 
ing the layered meaning. His desire is also to include all of the rele- 
vant hadfths relevant to the text. He died in Damascus in 774/1372. 

Ibn Mujahid: Ahmad ibn Musa at-Tamiml: the chief of the reciters, and 
the first to compile the seven recitations in al-Qira'at as-Sab'a. He 
was bom in 245/859 and died in 324/935. 

al-Mahalli: Jalal ad-dfn, the shaykh of as-SuyuG, who began a tafsir 
which as-Suyutl finished which is known as the Tafsir al-Jalalayn, 
d. 863/1459. 

Muqatil ibn Sulayman: born in Marw, where he taught, and then 
moved to Basra during the Abbasid Civil war. He later moved to 
Baghdad and then back to Basra where he died in 150/767. 
Although he is renowned for his knowledge of tafsir, and his tafsir 
appears to be the earliest in existence, he is often viewed 
unfavourably, but the reason is not entirely clear. His tafsir is full of 
narrative embellishments (part of the criticism of him may be due to 
his use of Jewish and Christian material in this respect). He was also 
criticised for borrowing interpretations from earlier sources indirect- 
ly (without 'listening' to them) and without isnad. He was also a 



Zaydi and Murji'ite. He wrote on abrogation, recitations, and other 
Qur'anic subjects. 

al-Qurtubi: Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Abi Bakr, Abu 'Abdullah al- 
Ansarl al-Qurtubi, of Cordoba, an ascetic Malikl scholar and hadlth 
scholar, one of the greatest Imams of tafsir who divided his days 
between writing and worship. His twenty volume tafsir is called al- 
Jami' H-Ahkam al-Qur'an. He delights in the grammatical and 
rhetorical virtuosity in the various readings which enhances the pos- 
sibilities of the meanings of the text. He enjoys the diversity of the 
different readings and the opportunity to construct and refute well- 
expressed arguments, and explores its layered meanings. He dis- 
dained self-importance and wore a simple caftan and cap. He trav- 
elled to the east and settled in Munya Abi'l-Khusayb in Upper 
Egypt where he died in 67 1/1273. 

ar-Razi: Al-Fakhr, Muhammad ibn 'Umar, Imam of tafsir who was 
unique in his time in judgement and transmission and basic sciences. 
A Shafi'I mujtahid who worked to preserve the religion of the Ahl 
as-Sunna from the deviations of the Mu'tazilites, Shi'ites, etc. He 
wrote a thirty-two volume tafsir, Mafatih al-Ghayb. He was a 
QurashI from Tabaristan, born in Rayy. He died in Herat in 

as-Sulami: Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman Muhammad ibn al-Husayn, a shaykh 
of the Sufis and author of a book on their history, ranks and tafsir. 
He wrote the Tabaqat as-Sufiya and Haqa'iq at-Tafslr. He was born 
in Nishapur in 325/936 and died in 412/1021. 

as-Suyuti: Jalal ad-dm'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Abi Bakr, born in 849/1445. 
A Shafi'i mujtahid, Sufi, hadlth scholar and historian. He wrote 
books on almost every subject. Raised as an orphan in Cairo, he 
memorised the Qur'an by the age of eight and proceeded to devote 
himself to study. At the age of forty he abandoned the company of 
men for the solitude of the Garden of al-Miqyas by the Nile, avoid- 
ing his prior friends, and proceeded to write nearly six hundred 
books. Wealthy Muslims and princes visited him, but he put them 
off and refused to visit the Sultan. His books include a hadlth collec- 
tion, Jdmi' al-Jawami', the Tafsir al-Jalalayn (completing a 
manuscript by his shaykh, Jalal ad-din al-Mahalli), and Tadrlb ar- 
Rawi. He died in 911/1505. 



at-Tabari: Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Jarir, one of the scholars and 
author of famous books. He was from Tabaristan. He was born in 
224/839 and died in 310/923. He has a massive and widely-used 
tafsir of the Qur'an called J ami* al-Bayan which is known as Tafsir 
at-Tabari. It contains a large number of hadlths, but it is also a 
structured work which deals with methodological issues. He dis- 
cusses linguistic concerns, the various readings, and the issue of 
interpretation by personal opinion (ra'y). He divides the Qur'an into 
verses which can only be interpreted by the Prophet; verses of which 
only Allah knows the interpretation; and those which can be inter- 
preted by people with proper knowledge of the language. 

Tawus ibn Kaysan: 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Kaysan al-Yamani. He was 
called Tawus (Peacock) because he was "the Peacock of the Qur'an 
reciters." He was a Persian and the leader of the Followers in being 
a proof of knowledge. He was righteous and ascetic. The authors of 
the Sunan and others transmit from him. He died in Makka and was 
buried in 106/724-5. He went on hajj forty times and prayed Subh 
with the wudu' he had done for 'Isha' of the previous night for a 
period of forty years. 

ath-Tha'alibl: Abu Zayd 'Abdu'r-Rahman b. Muhammad (d. 875/1470- 
1) wrote al-Jawahir al-Hisanji Tafsir al-Qur'an. He was interested 
in stories, narrative variants and their various authorities. He 
attempts to convey the richness of the narrative tradition. 

Ubayy ibn Ka'b: al-Ansari al-Bukhari. One of the Ansar of Khazraj, 
"the Master of the reciters". He was one of those at the second 
Pledge of 'Aqaba. He was present at Badr and all the battles. 'Umar, 
the second khalif, called him "the master of the Muslims". Ubayy 
was one of the select few who committed the Qur'anic revelations to 
writing and had a mushaf of his own. He acted as a scribe for the 
Prophet, writing letters for him. At the demise of the Prophet, he 
was one of the twenty-five or so people who knew the Qur'an com- 
pletely by heart. His recitation was so beautiful and his understand- 
ing so profound that the Prophet encouraged his companions to 
learn the Qur'an from him and from three others. He was the first to 
write for the Prophet. He died in 29 or 32 AH while 'Uthman was 



al-Wahidi: 'All ibn Ahmad Abu'l-Hasan an-NisaburL A grammarian 
and commentator, he wrote a classical tafsir on which as-Suyutl 
drew extensively- He died in 468/1076. He wrote al-Basit, al-WasTt, 
al-Wajiz. He dealt with asbab an-nuzul. 

az-Zamakhsharl: Abu'l-Qasim Mahmud b. 'Umar, a Persian-born 
Arabic scholar. Born in 467/1075 in Khwarizim. He was a 
Mu'tazilite. He died in 538/1144. His famous commentary on the 
Qur'an is called al-Kashshaf. 

Zayd ibn Thabit: Abu Kharija, born in Madina eleven years before the 
hijra and raised in Makka, he was one of the scribes who recorded 
the Qur'an. His father was killed when he was six and he emigrated 
at the age of eleven to Madina. When 'Umar travelled from Madina, 
he left Zayd in his place until he returned. Ibn 'Abbas used to visit 
him to learn from him. He wrote out the Qur'an in the time of Abu 
Bakr and copied out the copies of the Qur'an for 'Uthman. When he 
died in 45/665, Abu Hurayra said, "The scholar of this nation has 
died today." 


Some Classical Tafsirs of the Qur'an 

Ahkam al-Qur'an: "Rulings of the Qur'an" by Qadi Ibn al-'Arabl (d. 
543/1148). There are several books with this title by different 
authors. Essentially it presents the ayais which contain legal judge- 
ments and explains them. It is very systematically formulated. 

Anwar at-Tanzil: "The Light of Revelation and Secrets of 
Interpretation" by al-Baydawi. He condensed the tafsir of az- 
ZamakhsharT in places and expanded it in other places, removing its 
Mu'tazilite aspects and overtones. 

Haqa'iq at-TafsIr: "The Truths of Tafsir" by Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman as- 
Sulami (325/936 - 412/1021) He quotes extensively from the tafsir 
of Ibn \Ata s , an earlier Sufi (d. 309/922) and companion of al- 
Junayd, and seeks to bring out the mystical allusions in the Qur'an. 

Jami* li- Ahkam al-Qur'an: "Collection of the Rulings of the Qur'an" 
by al-Qurtubl, an extensive and very popular tafsir in twenty vol- 

al-Kashshaf: "The Unveiler" by az-Zamakhshari (d. 538/1144), a 
Mu'tazilite commentary on the Qur'an. It has a dogmatic position 
and is characterised by his own view-point. However, he has a bril- 
liant grasp of grammar and lexicology. 

Mafatih al-Ghayb: "Keys to the Hidden/' by ar-RazI (d. 606/1210), 
unfinished but expanded by his pupils. It is also called al-Tafsir al~ 
KabTr, or 'The Great Tafsir" because of its size. He brings in philo- 
sophical thought and other elements. He offers independent sugges- 
tions in careful arguments. He was criticised for exceeding the realm 
of actual tafsir and going into philosophy. 

as-Sawi: the gloss of Ahmad as-Sawi al-Maliki on the Tafsir al- 
Jalalayn. This actually makes the Jalalayn more usable because it 
explains words and grammatical usages and expands on it, It is in 
four volumes (which includes the text of the Jalalayn). 



Tafsir al-Jalalayn: "Commentary of the two Jalals," Jalal ad-DIn as™ 
SuyutTs (d. 911/1505) completion of the tafsir of his teacher, Jalal 
ad-din al-Mahalll (d. 863/1459). A paraphrase of the text of the 
Qur'an with linguistic explanations and material from hadith and 
variants. It is also known as al-Itqdn fi 'Ulum at-Tafsir ("The 
Perfection of the Sciences of Tqfsi^). 

Tafsir al-Qur'an: by Ibn Kathlr, a synopsis of earlier material in an 
accessible form, which made it popular. He relies totally on kadttk 
material without any opinion of his own. 

Tafsir at-Tabari: Its actual title is JamV al-Baydn. At-Tabari's com- 
mentary on the Qur'an is a compendium of earlier interpretations 
with his own opinions interspersed. It is valued but very large (thirty 

at-Tashil fi 'Ulum at-Tanzil: "Facilitation of the Sciences of 
Revelation" by Ibn Juzayy It is very succinct and comprehensive, 
quite densely packed into two volumes. It is one of the best of the 
smaller tafslrs. 

Qira'at of the Qur'an 

The qira'at or the readings, or methods of recitation, are named after 
the leader of a school of Qur'an reciters. Each qird'a derives its authority 
from a prominent leader of recitation in the second or third century hijri 
who in turn trace their riwaya or transmission back through the 
Companions of the Prophet. For instance, in the back of a Warsh Qur'an, 
one is likely to find "the riwaya of Imam Warsh from NafT al-Madam 
from Abu Ja'far Yazid ibn al-Qa'qa* from * Abdullah ibn 'Abbas from 
Ubayy ibn Ka'b from the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and 
grant him peace, from Jibril, peace be upon him, from the Creator." Or 
in a Hafs Qur'an you will see "the riwaya of Hafs ibn Sulayman ibn al- 
Mughlra al-Asadl al-KufT of the qird'a of 4 Asim ibn Abfn-Nujud al-Kufi 
from Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman 'Abdullah ibn Habib as-Sulaml from 
'Uthman ibn 'Affan and 'All ibn Abi Talib and Zayd ibn Thabit and 
Ubayy ibn Ka'b from the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him 



There are seven mutawdtir transmissions of the Qur'an: 

I. Nafi' (d. 169/785) (Madina based) 

A. The riwaya of Qalun 

B. The riwaya of Warsh (used in North Africa) 

n. Ibn Kathir (d. 120/737) (Makka based) 

A. The riwaya of al-Bazzi 

B. The riwaya of Qunbal 

HI. Abu *Amr ibn al-'Ala* (d. 154/771) (Basra) 

A. The riwaya of ad-Duri (used in Nigeria) 

B. The riwaya of as-Susi 

IV. Ibn 'Amir (d. 118/736) (Syria) 

A, The riwaya of Hisham 

B. The riwaya of Ibn Dhakwan 

V- ' Asim (d. 127/744) (KQfa) 

A. The riwaya of Shu'ba 

B. The riwaya of Hafs (the most widespread qira'a) 

VI. Hamza (d. 156/772) (Kufa) 

A. The riwaya of Khalaf 

B. The riwaya of Khallad 

VIL al-Kisa'I (d. 189/904) (Basra) 

A. The riwaya of Abu'l-Harith 

B, The riwaya of ad-DM 

There are also three additional mashhur tranmissions of the Qur'an: 

Abu Ja'far(d. 130/747) 
Ya'qub (d. 205/820) 
Khalaf (d. 229/843) 


Ha dith 

Hadith literature consists principally of records of eyewitness 
accounts of what the Prophet Muhammad, may the peace and blessings 
of Allah be on him, said and did during his lifetime. The Hadith have 
always been carefully distinguished from the Qur'an which is the revela- 
tion which was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad by Allah through the 
angel Jibril. Thus the Hadith literature complements the Qur'an and 
even contains commentaries on passages from the Qur'an - but the two 
are never confused with each other. The Qur'an is the Word of God. The 
Hadith contain the words of human beings. 

During the early years the Hadith were subjected to the most scrupu- 
lous checking and verification in the history of recorded scholarship, for 
a hadith which records the words or actions of the Prophet is not accept- 
ed as being completely reliable unless it can be traced back through a 
chain of human transmission made up of reliable people, from person to 
person, back to someone who was a Companion of the Prophet and who 
actually witnessed the event or heard the words which the hadith 
describes or relates. The most reliable transmitters of the Hadith were 
those people who loved and feared Allah and His Messenger the most. 

After a relatively short time, most of the Hadith which had been 
transmitted orally were recorded in written form, including the details of 
who all the people in the human chain of transmission were, and the 
greater the number of different chains of transmission there are for the 
same hadith, the more reliable any particular hadith is considered to be. 
At a later stage, usually during the 1st or 2nd centuries after the death of 
the Prophet, large collections of the Hadith were gathered together in 
order to ensure that they were not lost. 

Among the most important collections of Hadith are those made by 
al-Bukhari and Muslim, which were compiled about two hundred years 
after the death of the Prophet Muhammad, and which describe and 



record every aspect of his life and knowledge. Thus the Hadith form an 
essential part of the record of the teaching and the history and the biog- 
raphy of the Prophet Muhammad, being as they are reliable contempo- 
rary eyewitness accounts. 


Hadlth Terminology 

ahad (khabar): an isolated hadlth; a report which is transmitted through 
a single isnad or from a single source. 

ahadith: plural of hadlth, 

Ahl al-Hadith: "the people of Hadlth", term used for conservative tradi- 
tionalists, especially during the time of the Mu'tazilite/Ash'arite 

al-akabir 'an al-asaghir: "the greater from the lesser," meaning a 
senior from a junior narrator, or a prolific from a lesser narrator. 

akhbar: plural of khabar. 

'all: "high", a short chain of transmission. 

alqab: nicknames (by which transmitters are known). 

'ard: simply reading out the text to the teacher, or its being read out by 
an appointed reader 

asanid: plural of isnad. 

asbab al-wuriid: the historical circumstances of ahadith. 

asma' ar-rijal: "the names of the men", the study of the lives of the nar- 
rators who are the links in the chain of transmission, 

athar (plural athar): lit. impact, trace, vestige; synonym of khabar, but 
usually reserved for deeds and precedents of the Companions. 

'aziz: "rare, strong", a hadlth which has only two reporters in the isnad 
at any stage. 

balagha (plural balaghat): a hadlth in which the isnad is not mentioned, 
but the reporter quotes the Prophet directly. Also called mu 'allaq. 

dabit: precise and accurate in reproducing reports. 

dabt: the faculty of retention, the ability of a person to listen to some- 
thing, comprehend its original meaning and to retain it accurately. 

da 'if: "weak", the status below hasan. Usually the weakness is one of 
discontinuity in the isnad. 



fard: "single", similar to gharlb. It is of three kinds: a single person is 

found reporting it (like gharib) y the people of only one locality 

relate the hadlth\ or the narrators of one locality report the hadith 

from narrators of another locality (like the people of Makka from 

the people of Madina). 
fiqh al -hadith: the science of hadiths which deal with legal judgements. 
Follower: see Tabi'iin. 
gharlb: "strange, scarce". This term is used in the following contexts: 

gharlb al-alfag', uncommon words. 

gharlb al-matn: uncommon content of the text. 

gharlb as-sanad: a hadith which has a single reporter at some stage 

of the isnad, 
gharlb al-hadfth: the study of the linguistic origins of the difficult or 

uncommon words used in ahadith, 
hadith: reported speech of the Prophet. 
hadith qudsl: those words of Allah on the tongue of His Prophet which 

are not part of the Revelation of the Qur'an. 
hafiz: a hadith master who has memorised at least 100,000 hadiths - 

their texts, chains of transmissions and meanings. The plural is 

has an: good, excellent, often used to describe a hadith which is reliable, 

but which is not as well authenticated as one which is sahlh. 
huffaz; plural of hafiz. 

i'dal: when two or more links are omitted in the isnad. 
idraj: interpolation into a hadith. 
idtirab: shakiness in the isnad. 
ijaza: a certification, by a teacher that a particular student is qualified to 

teach a particular subject or to transmit a specific book or collection 

of traditions, 
'ilia: weakness in an isnad, 
'ilm al- hadith: knowledge and understanding of the contents of the 

*ilm ar-rijal: knowledge of the identity and reliability of the people who 

transmitted hadith. 



'flm mustalah al -hadith: knowledge of the terminology used to cate- 
gorise the quality of the hadith. 

*ilm tadwin al- hadith: knowledge of when and by whom the hadith 
came to be recorded in written form, and in which books these 
records are to be found. 

imla': dictation. 

inqita': when there is a break in the isnad. See munqatV. 

irsal: the transmitting by a Follower of a tradition while failing to name 
the Companion from whom it was transmitted. 

isnad (plural asdnid): the chain of transmission of a tradition, transmit- 
ted from individual to individual, from its source to the present. 

i'tibar: "consideration," seeking ways of strengthening support for a 
hadith from a single source. 

jami': comprehensive, a collection which contains hadiths on all the 
various subject matters. Sahlh al-Bukhdri is a Jami' but Muslim is 
not because it does not have a full chapter on tafslr. 

jarh wa ta'dil: "wounding and authentication", criticism of the trans- 
mitters in an isnad. 

juz': (plural ajza') collection of hadiths handed down on the authority of 
one individual Sometimes juz' is used for a collection of hadiths on 
a particular topic. 

khabar (plural akhbdr): news, report. 

al-kutub as-sitta: "the six books", considered to be the most authentic 
collections of hadith: al-Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, at-Tirmidhl, 
an-Nasa'I and Ibn Majah. 

majhul: unknown narrator. 

ma'lul: "defective" although it appears to be sound, it is affected by 
some infirmity. Also called mu 'allal. 

mansukh: what is abrogated or superseded, particularly with regard to 
earlier Qur'anic ayats and hadith which were subsequently replaced 
by later ones, thereby altering the legal judgements or parameters 
which had initially been expressed in the earlier ones. 

maqbul: "accepted". 

maqlub: "changed, reversed", when the isnad of a hadith is grafted onto 
a different text or vice versa, or if the order of a sentence is reversed. 



maqtu': "severed", a narration from a Tabi'i without mentioning the 

Prophet Sometimes munqatV is used as a synonym, but munqatV 

more properly denotes any break at any point in the isnad. 
marasil: the plural of mursal. 
mardud: "rejected". 
marfu': "elevated", a narration from the Prophet mentioned by a 

Companion, e.g. "The Messenger of Allah said. . ." 
ma'ruf: something whose meaning is well-known. 
mashhur: a hadlth reported by more than two transmitters. Some say 

that it is every narrative which comes to be widely-known, whatever 

its original isnad. 
matn: the text of a hadlth. 
matruh: contradicts direct evidence. 

matruk; "abandoned" because the isnad contains a known liar. 
mawdu': "fabricated, forged", a hadlth whose text goes against the 

established norms of the sayings of the Prophet. 
mawquf: "stopped," narration from a Companion without mentioning 

the Prophet. It can be elevated to marfu' if it is of the nature of "We 

were commanded to. , ." and the like. 
ma'aUal: "defective" although it appears to be sound, it is affected by 

some inxirrnity. Also called ma'lul. 
mu'allaq: "hanging", missing the whole isnad and quoting the Prophet 

directly. Also known as balagha. 
mu'an'an: all links in the isnad are connected simply by the preposition 

'an (from) and thus the manner of transmission is not mentioned. 
mu'dal: "perplexing", omitting two or more links in the isnad. 
mudallas: a "concealed" hadlth is one which is weak due to the uncer- 
tainty caused by tadlls which is where the shaykh of transmission is 

not mentioned and so the chain of transmission is unclear. 
mudhakarat al-hadith: memorisation of hadlth. 
mudraj: "interpolated", an addition or comment by a reporter to the text 

of the saying being narrated. 
mudtarib: "shaky", when reporters disagree about a particular shaykh 

of transmission or some points in the isnad or text so that none of 

the opinions can be preferred over the others. 



mufrad: with one narrator, or from one place. 

muhaddith: one who transmits and studies hadiths. 

mu.j 'am: a book arranged in alphabetical order, like the geographical 

and biographical dictionaries of Yaqut. Such collections of hadith 

are called Mu'jam as-Sahaba, 

mukataba: to receive written traditions from a scholar, either directly or 

by correspondence, with or without permission, to narrate them to 

mukhaththirun: "reporters of numerous traditions", Companions of the 

Prophet who reported more than a thousand hadlths: Abu Hurayra, 

'Abdullah ibn 'Umar, Anas ibn Malik, 'A'isha, Abdullah ibn al- 

' Abbas, Jabir ibn 'Abdullah, and Abu Sa'id al-Kmidii, 
mukhtalif: names with the same form that can be read in different ways, 

e.g. Hamid and Humayd, As mu'talif. 
munawala: passing on the text by hand with the approval of the shaykh 

of transmission. 
munkar: "denounced", a narration reported by a weak reporter which 

goes against another authentic hadith. 
munqati': "broken", a hadith where a link is omitted anywhere before 

the Tabi'T, i.e. closer to the traditionist reporting the hadith. 
muqabala wa-fashih: formal system of checking and correcting. 
mursal: a hadith in which a man in the generation after the Companions 

quotes directly from the Prophet without mentioning the Companion 

from whom he received it. (See irsal). 
musahhaf : traditions which have a mistake in the words or letters of the 

isnad or the main, e.g. Hasan is written as Hashan. 
musalsal: "uniformly-Hnked" isnad, one in which all the reporters use 

the same manner of transmission, 
musannaf: a hadith collection arranged in topical chapters. The 

Muwatta' of Imam Malik is an example of this. 
mushkil: containing difficult words or meanings. 
mushtarak: with ambiguous words. 
musnad: a collection of hadith arranged according to the first authority 

in its isndd\ also a hadith which can be traced back through an 

unbroken isnad to the Prophet. 



musnid: also musnidi, someone who collected hadiths into a Musnad. 

mustadrak: a collection of hadith in which the compiler, accepting the 
preconditions of a prior compiler, collects other traditions which ful- 
fil those conditions but were missed out. 

mustakhraj: a collection of hadith in which a later compiler collects 
fresh isnads for traditions. 

mustalah al-hadith: classification of the hadith as weak, strong, etc. 

mutaba'a: "following": following up to see if a hadith is reported from 
someone else. 

mu'talif: names with the same form that can be read in different ways, 
e.g. Hamad and Humayd, as mukhtalif. 

mutawatir: a hadith which is reported by a large number of reporters at 
all stages of the isnad. 

muttasil: "continuous", a hadith which has an uninterrupted isnad, 

mutun: the plural of main. 

naqd: criticism. 

naql: transmission. 

nasikh: abrogating, (See mansukh). 

nass: unequivocal, clear injunction; an explicit textual meaning. 

nazil: a long chain of transmission. 

nusus: plural of nass. 

rawl: a transmitter of reports, oral or written. 

rihla: to travel in search of knowledge, in this case, to collect ahadith. 
Someone who does this is called rahhala or jawwal, "one who trav- 
els extensively in search of knowledge". Sometimes they would 
travel for months in order to listen to a single hadith. 

rjjal: the men who are the links in the chain of transmission or isnad of 
a hadith. 

riqaq: ahadith which deal with piety and asceticism, so named because 
they produce tenderness in the heart. 

risala: a collection of ahadith which deals with one major topic. It can 
also be called simply a "book" (kitab). 

riwaya: transmission of texts. 

riwaya bi'1-ma'na: transmission of meaning. 

riwaya bi'1-lafz: literal transmission. 



saduq: someone who is truthful. 

saduq yahim: someone who is truthful but commits errors. 

Sahaba: the Companions of the Prophet. 

Sahabl: a Companion of the Prophet. 

sahifa: a collection of hadiths written down by one of the Companions 

during his lifetime or by their Followers in the next generation. They 

are also described as rasa'il and kutub, 

sahih: healthy and sound with no defects, used to describe an authentic 

Sahihan: the two Sahih Collections of al-Bukhari and Muslim. 

sama': listening to the teacher, hence it is direct transmission. 

shadhdh: an "irregular" hadith which is reported by a trustworthy per- 
son but which goes against the narration of someone who is more 
reliable than him. 

shahid: a witness, another narration which supports the meaning of a 
hadith which is being investigated with an entirely different isnad. 

shawahid: plural of shahid. 

shuriit: criteria, the means by which someone classifies hadiths. It is the 
plural of shart. 

Tabi'un: the Followers, the second generation of the early Muslims who 
did not meet the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and 
grant him peace, but who learned the Din of Islam from his 

Tabi'u't-Tabi'In: the generation after the Tabi'un, who did not meet 
any of the Companions. 

tadlls: describes an isnad in which a reporter has concealed the identity 
of his shaykh. There is tadlis al-isnad where he reports from a 
shaykh whom he did not hear directly in a manner which suggests 
that he heard the hadith in person. There is tadlis ash-shuyukh in 
which the shaykh is not mentioned by name, but by a nickname or 
alias in order to conceal the shaykh' s identity. There is tadlis ai- 
tasqlya in which a trustworthy person relates from a weak person 
from a trustworthy person and the transmitter deletes the weak link. 

tashlf : inadvertently altering the sense of the text by having misread the 

tawatur: the quality of being mutawatir. 



thabit: "firm", someone who is a competent transmitter. 

thiqa: someone who is trustworthy in transmission. 

thiqa thabit: someone who is very reliable, next in rank to a 

turuq (plural oftarTq): means or paths of transmission. 
wijada: passing on a text without an ijaza. 
ziyadatu thiqa: an addition by someone who is trustworthy. 


Some Important People 
in the Field of Hadith 

'Abdu'r-Razzaq ibn Humam: born in 126/743 in San' a, Yemen, he 
began the study of hadith at the age of twenty. He produced the ear- 
liest musannaf collection. He died in 211/826. 

Abu Dawud: Abu Sulayman ibn al-Ash'ath ibn Ishaq al-Azdi as- 
Sijistanl, the author of the Sunan and one of the greatest of the 
scholars of hadith. He was born in 203/817 and died on a Friday in 
the middle of Shawwal, 275/888 in Basra. He was so accomplished 
in the science of hadith that it was said that hadiths were made pli- 
able for Abu Dawud in the same way that iron was made pliable for 
the Prophet Da'ud. He said, "I wrote down 500,000 hadiths of the 
Prophet and selected from them those which are in the Sunan," He 
was a pupil of Ibn Hanbal. 

Abu Nu'aym al-Isfahani: Ahmad ibn 'Abdullah ibn Ahmad al-Isfahani, 
a notable hadith scholar who studied under many excellent men. He 
wrote various works, including al-Mustadrak 'ala hull min as- 
Sahihayn and Hilya al-Awllya'. It is said that it was taken to 
Nishapur and sold there for 400 dinars. He was born in Rajab, 
334/942 and died in Safar, or on 20 Muharram, 430/1038 in Isfahan. 

Abu Ya*la: Ahmad ibn 'All at-Tamlmi al-Mawsuli, author of Musnad 

al-Kabir. He was a hafiz of hadith who was known as "the hadith 

scholar of Mosul". He died in Mosul in 307/919. 
Ahmad ibn Hanbal: Imam of the Ahl as-Sunna and founder of the 

Hanbali school, born in Baghdad in 164/780. He was so devoted to 

the Sunna and hadith that he became their Imam in his time. He 

learned,/?,?/* from ash-ShafVi. He died in 241/855. 
AI-Baghawi: Abu Muhammad al-Husayn ibn Mas'ud, born in Bagha 

near Herat, a Shafi'I Imam in various fields. His father was a furrier. 

He was known to his contemporaries as "the Reviver of the Din". 

He has a sixteen volume Sharh as-Sunna, dealing with Shafi'I fiqh 



and its basis. He has a tafsir entitled Lubab at-Ta'wil. He died in 
Marw in 510/1117. He produced the Masabih as-Sunna which is a 
collection of hadith. 

al-Bayhaqi: Ahmad ibn al-Husayn, Abu Bakr, born in Khasrajand, a vil- 
lage around Bayhaq near Nishapur. He produced nearly a thousand 
volumes, and was a ShafVi. Al-Bayhaqi was one of the great Imams 
in hadlth and Shafi'i jurisprudence. He wrote some important books, 
such as-Sunan al-Kubra, as-Sunan as-Sughra, al-Mabsut, and al- 
Asma' wa 's-Sifat. He died in Nishapur in 458/1066. 

al-Bazzar: Abu Bakr Ahmad 'Amr, a hadlth scholar from the people of 
Basra. He compiled two Musnads, a large one called al-Bahr al- 
Kablr and a small one (aU 'Hal). He died in Ramla in 292/904. 

al-Bukhari: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Isma'il, travelled in search 
of knowledge to all the men of hadlth of the cities. He was born in 
194/810 in Bukhara. He started to frequent the company of the 
shaykhs of transmission when he was eleven. He said that he pro- 
duced the Sahlh from the cream of 6,000 hadlths, and did not write 
down any hadlth in it until he had first prayed two rak'ats. He died 
in 256/870. 

ad-Daraqutnl: * AH ibn 'Umar, from Dar al-Qutn, a part of Baghdad. He 
was an unrivalled scholar in his era. He had knowledge of traditions 
and weaknesses and the names of the men and their states in integri- 
ty, truthfulness and knowledge of the schools of the fitqaha 1 . He was 
born in 306/918 and died in 385/995. He has many books, including 
a hadlth collection, as-Sunan, and al-Istidrak which is about the 
weakness of some hadlths in al-Bukhari. He also has one of the first 
books on the qira'at. 

ad-Darimi: Abu Muhammad 'Abdullah ibn 'Abdu'r-Rahman at- 
Tarruml, born in Samarqand in 181/797-8 and died there in 255/869. 
He travelled widely in search of knowledge and was known for his 
integrity and scrupulousness. His students included Muslim, Abu 
Dawud, at-Tirmidhl and an-Nasa'L He was appointed qadl of 
Samarqand, judged one case and then resigned. He has a Sunan, 

adh-Dhahabi: Muhammad ibn Ahmad, great Turkoman Muslim schol- 
ar, born in Damascus in 673/1274, who wrote a hundred books, 
including Siyar a 'lam an-Nubala\ He records the biographies of the 
narrators of hadlth. He died in Damascus in 748/1347. 



al-Hakim: Abu Abdullah Muhammad ibn 'Abdullah an-Nlsaburi, born 
in 321/933, a Shaft' Ifaqih and hadith scholar. He travelled exten- 
sively in search of hadith and listened to nearly 2,000 shaykhs. He 
became qadi of Nishapur in 359 (hence his name "the Judge") and 
then in Jurjan. He has about 1,500 volumes on hadith, of which the 
most famous is al-Mustadrak. He died in Nishapur in 405/1014, 

Ibn 'Abdi'I-Barr: an-Numayri, Abu 'Umar, hafii of the Maghrib and 
Shaykh al- Islam, author of al-IstVab. He was born in Cordoba in 
368/978 and died at the age of 95 in Shatiba in 463/1071. An impor- 
tant hadith scholar, Maliki scholar and author and a mujtahid, he 
was nicknamed the hadith Scholar of the West. "Abdu'1-Barr was 
the master of the people of his time in memory and precision. He 
was an expert on genealogy and history. Ibn Hazm said, 'There is no 
one with more knowledge of the fiqh of hadith than him." He wrote 
a number of works, the most famous of which is al-Isti 'ab. He trav- 
elled throughout Andalusia. He was appointed qadi several times. 
He also wrote the earliest major commentary on the Muwatta* called 

Ibn Abi Shayba: Abu Bakr ibn Abi Shayba: the author of the Musnad, 
al-Musannaf and other books. Based in Kufa, Iraq, Ibn Abi Shayba 
was a major authority in hadith, Abti Zur'a, al-Bukhari, Muslim, 
and Abu Dawud all related from him. He died in Muharram, 

Ibn <AdI: 'Abdullah ibn 'Adl al-Jurjanl, (277/891 - 365/976). He wrote 
al-Kdmil, a general survey of the development of critical assessment 
of the narrators of hadith. 

Ibn 'Asakir: 'AH, (d. 571/1176), author of Tabyin and Ta'rlkh Dimishq 
which contain biographies of transmitters. 

Ibn Babuya: (Ibn Babawayh) Muhammad ibn 'All al-Qummi, (306/918 
- 381/992). He is known also as Shaykh Saduq. Author of the main 
Shi'ite collections of hadith, Man la Yahdhuruh al-Faqlh t which 
covers only legal matters. 

Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani: Abu'1-Fadl Ahmad ibn 'Ali, born in Cairo in 
773/1372. Sh&fflfaqih and hadith scholar, he studied under az- 
Zayla'I and others, was a qadi several times and was known as 
"Shaykh al-Islam". He wrote Fath al-Bdrl and died in Cairo in 


Ibn Hibban 

Ibn Hibban: Muhammad ibn Hibban at-Tamlmi al-Busti, a Shafi 4 ! 
hadith scholar who died in Bust in 354/965. He wrote Kitab ath- 
Thiqat and compiled the Sahlh ibn Hibban. The hadlths in this book 
are arranged neither as in a musannaf uox as in a musnad. 

Ibn Kathir: Isma'Il ibn 'Umar ibn Kathir, Abu'1-Fida', born in 
701/1302 in a village outside Damascus where he moved at the age 
of five. He was widely travelled. He was a Shaft 'i scholar with 
books with expertise in various areas, particularly the science of 
rijal. He has a well-known tafsir. He died in Damascus in 774/1372. 

Ibn Khuzayma: Muhammad ibn Ishaq, Abu Bakr as-Sulami, born in 
Nishapur in 223/838. He was a Shafi'I scholar and mujtahid and 
wrote more than 140 books, including his Mukhtasar al-Mukhtasar 
and a Sahih collection. He died in Nishapur in 311/924. 

Ibn Ma'in: Yahya ibn Ma'in, Abu Zakariyya al-Baghdadl, born in 
Niqya, a village near al-'Anbar in 157/775. He was one of the great 
Imams of hadith and knowledge of its narrators, known as "the 
Master of hadith Masters." His father left him a fortune which he 
spent on gathering hadlths. He said, "I have written a million 
hadlths with my hand.*' He lived in Baghdad and wrote several 
books on hadith and died while on hajj in 233/848. 

Ibn Majah: Muhammad ibn Yazid ar-Rabi', Abu 'Abdullah al-Qazwim, 
of Qazwin, born in 209/824. He was a hadith master and mufassir 
who travelled in search of knowledge and composed his Sunan, He 
died in 273/886. 

Ibn Sa'd: see Muhammad ibn Sa'd. 

Ibn as-Salah: Abu t Amr 'Uthman ibn 'Abdu'r-Rahman ash-Shahrazuri, 
known as Ibn as-Salah. He died in 643/1245. He wrote a book on 
the science of hadith, Kitab 'Ulum al-Hadlth. He was a great author- 
ity in Damascus. 

Ishaq ibn Rahawayh: at-Tamimi, called Abu Ya'qub, the scholar of 
Khurasan in his time and the "Amir al-Mu'minln" in hadith. He was 
originally from Marw, born in 161/778. He revived the Sunna in the 
east. He travelled throughout the lands to gather hadith. Whenever 
he heard anything he remembered it and did not forget it, Ibn 
Hanbal, al-Bukhari, Muslim, at-Tirmidhi, an-Nasa'i and others took 
from him. Ahmad ibn Hanbal said, "I do not know of Ibn 
Rahawayh' s equal in Iraq." Abu Zur'a said, "I never met anyone 



with a better memory than Ishaq." Abu Hatim said, "His precision 
and freedom from error are a marvel, besides the memory he has 
been endowed with." He has a four volume Musnad. He lived in 
Nishapur and died there in 238/853. 

Malik ibn Anas: Abu 'Abdullah al-Asbahi al-Himyari, born in Madina, 
the famous Imam of Madina in fiqh and hadith. One of the four 
great Imams. Ash-Shafi'i was one of his pupils. He had great knowl- 
edge and embodied the Din. He compiled the al-Muwatta\ He died 
in Madina in 179/795. 

al-Mizzi: Jamal ad-Din, the famous traditionist. His two major works 
are: the rijal work, Tahdhlb al-Kamal ft Asma' ar-Rijal, and Tuhfat 
al-Ashrdf bi-Ma'rifa'l-Atraf. The second work is of great utility for 
analysis of the isnads of hadlths. (d. 742/1341). 

Muhammad ibn Sa'd: Abu 'Abdullah, the famous reliable scholar, the 
mawla of the Banu Hashim, known as the kafib or scribe of al- 
Waqidl, author of the Tabaqat. He died in 230/845 at the age of 62. 

Muslim: Abu'l-Husayn Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj al-Qushayri an-Nisabun, 
born in Nishapur in 204/820. He was a ShafTl scholar and hadith 
master, He came to Baghdad more than once and transmitted hadith 
there. He composed his Sahih from 3,000 hadiths, and it is said to 
be the soundest book of hadith. He died in 261/875. 

an-Nasa'i: Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman Ahmad ibn 'All ibn SmTayb, born in 
215/830 in Nasa. He studied with the great scholars and went to 
those who were mentioned as having knowledge in his time. He was 
a ShafTl and wrote on the rites of hajj according to the ShafTites. 
He used to fast every other day and loved women, having four wives 
and many slave-girls. He wrote many books on the virtues of the 
Companions, especially on 'All. He was skilled in the science of 
hadith and unique in memorisation and precision. He compiled one 
of the Six Sahih Collections of hadith: the Sunan. His Sunan is the 
one with the fewest weak hadiths after the two main Sahih collec- 
tions. He was murdered in 303/915 in Damascus because of his love 
for 'Ali by the remnants of the Kharijites. 

an»Nawawi: Yahya ibn Sharaf, Abu Zakariyya, born in the village of 
Nawa on the Horan Plain of southern Syria in 631/1233. He was the 
Imam of the later Shafi'ites and wrote many books: Minhdj at- 
Talibin, Kitab al-Adhkdr, Riyad as-Salihin and other books. He lived 



very simply. After twenty-seven years in Damascus, he returned 
home and died at the age of 44 in 676/1277. 

ar-Ramhurmuzi: Abu Muhammad (d. c. 370/981), the first writer to 
compile a comprehensive work on the science of hadlth entitled 
Kitab al-Muhaddith al-Fdsil 

ash-Shawkaiu: Muhammad ibn 'All, bom in Shawkan, near Khawlan, 
Yemen in 1173/1760. An important scholar, he was educated in 
San'a' where he became a qadi. He wrote 114 books, especially an 
eight volume commentary on hadlth called Nayl al-Awtar. He died 
in 1250/1834. 

as-Suyutl: Jalalu*d-din, 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Abl Bakr, born in 
849/1445. A Shafi'I mujtahid, Sufi, hadlth scholar and historian who 
wrote books on almost every subject. Raised as an orphan in Cairo, 
he memorised the Qur'an by the age of eight and proceeded to study 
intensively. At the age of forty he abandoned the company of men 
for the solitude of the Garden of al-Miqyas by the Nile, avoiding his 
former friends. He wrote nearly six hundred books. Wealthy 
Muslims and princes tried to visit him, but he put them off and 
refused to visit the ruler. His books include his hadlth work, JamV 
al-Jawami', the Tafslr al-Jalalayn (completing a manuscript by his 
teacher, Jalalu'd-dm al-Mahalll), and TadrTb ar-RawT. He died in 

at-Tabaram: Sulayman ibn Ahmad, Abu'l-Qasim, born in Acre in 
260/873. A great hadlth master and mufassir, he travelled to listen to 
hadlth for sixteen years, meeting about a thousand shaykhs of trans- 
mission. He travelled from Syria in quest of hadtths, and his journey 
lasted thirty-three years. He settled in Isfahan where he related 
hadiths for sixty years and produced three hadlth collections, the 
largest of which is the twenty-five volume al-Muj'arn al-Kabir He 
died in Isfahan in 360/971. 

at-TayalisI: Abu Dawiid Sulayman ibn Dawud ibn al-Janid al-Farisi. He 
was an outstanding scholar. Al-Qallas and Ibn al-Madinl both said 
that they had never met anyone with a better memory than him. Ibn 
Mahdi said, "He is the most truthful of people." He wrote from a 
thousand shaykhs. He was born in 133/750 and died in 201/818 at 
the age of sixty-eight. He has a Musnad, the earliest musnad still 



at-Tirmidhi: Abu *Isa ibn Muhammad ibn 'Isa, he was bora in 209/824 
and is one of the great scholars. He was proficient mfiqh and had 
many books on the science of hadith. His book as-Sahih is one of 
the best and most useful books. It is properly entitled al-Jami'. He 
also has ash-Skama 'il an-Nabawiyya. It is said, "Whoever has this 
book in his house, it is as if he had the Prophet speaking." He died 
in Tirmidh in 279/892. 


Major Collections of Hadith 

Arba'In: "The Forty Badlth" by an-NawawI (d. 676/1277), perhaps the 
most popular small collection of hadiths. 

Fath al-Bari: by Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalanl (d. 852/1449), a fourteen vol- 
ume commentary on Sdhih al-Bukhart It is sometimes described as 
the work by which Muslim scholars repaid the debt they owed to al- 

al-Jami* as-Saghir: by as-Suyuti (d. 911/1505), a large compilation of 
hadith which as-Suyuti completed in 907/1502. It is arranged alpha- 
betically without isnad. He also has the Jam' al-Jdm' and al-JamV 

Jami* of at-Tirmidhi: (d. 279/892) contains about 4,000 hadiths. After 
each hadith he comments on its legal usage and the quality of its 
isnad. He has personal notes on almost every page which mention 
the degrees of authenticity of the hadith, the different versions of a 
single report, as well as the various currents of thought and practice 
in the Islamic world of his time. This makes his JamV unique. 

Masablh as-Sunna: by al-Baghawi (d, 510/1117), a collection of 4,719 
hadiths. It is arranged by topic, but he omitted the isnads as they 
were taken from well-known collections. It was designed to give 
people guidance in their daily lives. The Mishkat al-Masabih is an 
expanded version of it. 

Mishkat al-Masabih: by Walfd-dln al-Khatib at-Tabrizi. At-Tabrizi 
revised and expanded Masabih as-Sunna by al-Baghawi, mentioning 
the sources and weight of the hadiths cited and adding more tradi- 
tions on the topics. 

Musnad Ahmad: collected by Ahmad ibn Hanbal (d. 241/855). It is the 
most important and exhaustive of the Musnad works. His aim was to 
collect all traditions which were likely to prove genuine if tested and 
could serve as a basis for argument. He never claimed that all it 
included was genuine or reliable, but anything not in it had no force. 
His Musnad was respectively transmitted by his son 'Abdullah (d. 



290/903) and the latter' s student, Abu Bakr al-Qati'I (d. 368/979), 
both of whom added some hadiths. It contains a total of 30,000 
hadiths (with 10,000 repetitions) narrated by 700 Companions. 

Musnad of AbuDawiid at-TayalisI: (d. 201/818). It contains 2,767 
hadiths with full isnads on the authority of 281 Companions, and is 
said to be the first musnad. The hadiths are arranged by names, 
beginning with the first four khalifs, then those who were at the 
Battle of Badr, the Muhajirun, the Ansar, women, and the youngest 
Companions, This arrangement was done by his student Ibn Hablb 
who compiled the hadiths he had received from him. If there is any 
doubt in the text, it is pointed out. Sometimes the character of the 
transmitters is mentioned and sometimes comments about the trans- 
missions are made. It is the oldest musnad still extant. 

Musannaf: by 'Abdu'r-Razzaq ibn Huraam (d. 211/826). This is the 
earliest musannaf work in existence. It is divided into topical chap- 
ters, ending with the virtues of the Prophet Muhammad (shamd 'il). 
A more exhaustive example is the thirteen volume Musannaf by Ibn 
Abl Shayba (d. 235/849). 

al-Mustadrak 'ala as-Sahihayn: by al-Hakim an-Nlsabiiri (d. 
405/1014). He used hadiths which he considered met the criteria of 
al-Bukhari and Muslim. 

al-Muwatta': of Malik ibn Anas (d, 179/795), the oldest and most 
authentic collection of hadith and fiqh. 

Riyad as-Salihin: an-NawawI (d. 676/1277), a famous collection of 
hadiths arranged by subject. It is a selection from the Sahth and a 
couple of other works on hadith accompanied by relevant Qur'anic 

Sahlh al-Bukhari : (d. 256/870). Generally accepted to be the most reli- 
able and most prestigious of the collections of hadith. It is a 3 ami' 
collection and a musannaf, Al-Bukhari was said to have revised it 
three times. Al-BukharT sought to list only hadiths which possessed 
uninterrupted chains of credible authorities. He wished to impress 
the contents on the reader and to that end divided the book into more 
than a hundred chapters with 3,450 sub-sections, each with a head- 
ing to indicate the contents. 

Sahlh ibn Hibban: (d. 354/965). The hadiths in this book are arranged 
neither as in a musannaf hoi as in a musnad. His collection contains 


Sahih Muslim 

2,647 hadiths that do not appear in the collections of either al- 
Bukharl or Muslim. 

Sahih Muslim: (d. 261/875). It is considered to be one of the two most 
reliable collections of hadith. It includes 12,000 hadlths (with 4,000 
repetitions). Since it does not contain a complete chapter on tafsir, it 
is not considered a Jami', Muslim is stricter than al-Bukhari in 
pointing out the differences between narrations and has a better 
arrangement of the hadlths. 

Sunan of Abu Dawud: (d. 275/888). One of the Six Collections, it con- 
tains 4,800 hadiths mostly on legal matters. It was the first book of 
its type in hadith literature and is considered the best Sunan. The 
author often points out the weaknesses and peculiarities in hadiths 
and their isnads or expresses his preference among the variants of a 
hadtth. It is one of the most comprehensive collections. 

Sunan of ad-Daraqutnl: (d. 385/995). He used hadlths which he con- 
sidered met the criteria of al-Bukhari and Muslim and adds isnads 
and alternate versions and notes about the narrators. Its reliability is 
second only to the Sound Six Collections. It was the basis for the 
collections of al-BaghawI and at-Tabrlzi. 

Sunan of ad-Dariml: (d, 255/869). This book is a musannaf which is 
also called al-Musnad al-Jdmi', a misnomer. It contains 3,550 
hadlths plus comments on the narrators and on legal points. It has an 
introductory chapter on pre-Islamic times and traditions connected 
to the life and character of the Prophet. It is thought of as reliable 
and is one of the earliest extant Sunan collections. It is an important 
collection and some considered it to be one of the Six. 

Sunan of Ibn Majah: (d. 273/886). It contains 4,341 hadiths. Of these, 
3,002 appear also in the collections of al-Bukhari, Muslim, at- 
Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, and Nasa'L It is one of the Six, although it is 
considered less authentic than the Muwatta". It contains many 
hadlths which are forged and he did not mention his criteria for 

Sunan of an-Nasa'I: (d. 303/915). His Sunan is the one with the fewest 
weak hadiths after the two Sahih collections. The Sunan which is 
one of the Six is al-Mujtaba or as-Sunan as-Sughra, which is a syn- 
opsis of a large collection of hadiths which he considered to be fair- 



ly reliable. In the smaller collection he only included those hadiths 

which he considered to be reliable. 
as-Sunan al-Kubra: by al-Bayhaqi (d. 458/1066). The hadiths in this 

compilation are arranged according to their legal import. They 

include traditions that were not available from earlier compilations. 
Tadrib ar-RawI: by as-Suyuti (d. 911/1505), the classic commentary on 

the sciences of hadith. It is an extensive commentary on the Taghrib 

of an-Nawawi. 
Tahdhib al-Ahkam: by Muhammad b. al-Hasan at-TusI (385/995 - 

460/1068) It contains 13,590 hadiths and is one of the main Shi 'tie 

at-Targhib wa't-Tarhlb: by Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalanl (d. 852/1449), a 

small collection arranged according to topics. 

Traditional Ranking of Hadlth Collections 

1. The Most Reliable Collections: 

Al-Muwatta\ Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, 1 

2. The Four Sunan Collections: 

Abu Dawud, an-Nasa'i, at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah. 

"The Four" are: Sahih al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, the Sunan of Abu 
Dawud and the Sunan of an-Nasa'I. 

"The Sound Six": are Sahih al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, the Sunan of 
Abu Dawud, the Sunan of an-Nasa'I, the JamV of at-Tirmidhi and the 
Sunan of Ibn Majah. 

1. Although the Muwatta' is the oldest and most reliable collection, it is not men- 
tioned as one of the "Four" or the "Six" since its hadiths are found in the two SahTk 


General Terms used in Fiqh 

abiq: a runaway slave. 

adab al-qadl: the duties of the judge. 

'adala; uprightness of character, justice, balance and observance of the 
requirements of the dm. It is a legal term which denotes certain 
qualities which are preconditions for being allowed to be a witness. 
Someone who possesses these qualities is called 'adl. 

'adl: justice; an upright and just person. 

al-ahkam al-khamsa: "the five values", the categories oifard or wajib, 
mandub t mubah y makruhi and haram. 

al-ahkam as-sultaniya: governmental principles, governmental and 
administrative law. 

ahliya: legal capacity, also called kafa'a. 

ahliya al-ada': an active legal capacity which can incur rights as well as 

ahliya al-wujub: a receptive legal capacity which is good for receiving 
entitlements but cannot incur obligations. 

'anat: fornication, (cf. zina). 

'aqila: the paternal kinsmen of an offender who are liable for the pay- 
ment of blood money. 

'aqiqa: a sacrifice in celebration of the birth of a child on the eighth day. 

arsh: compensation given in the case of someone's injury caused by 
another person. 

awqaf: (plural of waqf) pious foundations. 

baligh: someone who is an adult. 

al-bara'a al-asillya: presumption of innocence or freedom from liabili- 

batil: null and void, 

bayylna: oral testimony. 



bint labun: a two-year-old she-cameL The proper age for a camel paid 

in zakat for 36 to 45 camels. 
bint makhad: a one-year-old she-camel. The proper age for a camel 

paid in zakat for 25 to 35 camels. 
bulugh: the age of sexual maturity. 
daman: guarantee. 
darar: damage, 
da r ura: necessity. 

darura malji'a: pressing necessity, also called mulihha. 
dhimma: obligation or contract, in particular a treaty of protection for 

non-Muslims living in Muslim territory. 
dhimml: a non-Muslim living under the protection of Muslim rule. 
dhihar: see zihar, 
dhu mahram: a male, whom a woman can never marry because of close 

relationship (e.g. a brother, a father, an uncle etc.); or her own hus- 
dimar: a bad debt; property which has slipped out of one's possession 

with little chance of recovery (like fugitive slaves). According to the 

Malikls, if it is gold or silver, zakat is paid for one year only on it 

when it is removed. If it is cattle, then it is for all the past years. 
diya: financial compensation (blood money) for homicide or injury. 
faqlh (plural fuqaha'): a man learned in the knowledge of fiqh (see 

below) who by virtue of his knowledge can give a legal judgement. 
far': a branch or sub-division, and (in the context of qiyas) a new legal 

fara'id: plural of farida, shares of inheritance; religious obligations. 
fard al-'ayn: an individual obligation. 
fard al-kifaya: also fard kafa'i, el collective obligation, something 

which is obligatory for the community as a whole and is satisfied if 

one adult performs it. 
fasid: irregular, invalid, corrupt, void, deficient. 
fasiq (plural fussaq): a person not meeting the legal requirements of 

righteousness. The evidence of such a person is inadmissible in 

fatawa: plural oifatwa. 



fatwa: an authoritative statement on a point of law. 

fay': spoils taken without fighting. It goes to the Muslim treasury, the 

fidya: a ransom, compensation paid for rites or acts of worship missed 

or wrongly performed because of ignorance or ill health. 
fiqh: the science of the application of the SharVa. A practitioner or 

expert in fiqh is called afaqlh. 
fiqh al-aqalllyat: "jurisprudence of [Muslim] minorities", a new name 

for an old area of jurisprudence that used to be called fiqh an- 

nawaziU or "jurisprudence of momentous events". 
fiqh an-nawazil: "jurisprudence of momentous events", an area of fiqh 

covered mostly by the Malikls, which is concerned with the fiqh for 

Muslims living in a minority situation. 
fisq: the testimony of someone who is fasiq, who behaves in a manner 

which can be described as fisq, is not accepted as evidence in court. 

This involves committing a major sin or persisting in minor ones. 
fuqamV: plural of faqih. 
ghanlma: booty, weapons, horses and all moveable possessions taken in 

battle from unbelievers. 
gharad: motive, individual interest. 

ghasb: usurpation, unlawful appropriation of property, without the per- 
mission of its owner and without stealthiness. 
ghulul: stealing from the war booty before its distribution. 
ghusl: major ablution of the whole body with water required to regain 

purity after menstruation, lochia and sexual intercourse, 
habus: habous, another term for waqf. 
hadath: minor ritual impurity requiring wudu': passing wind, urination, 

defecation, vomiting. 
hadd (plural hudiid): Allah's boundary limits for the lawful and unlaw- 
ful. The hadd punishments are specific fixed penalties laid down by 

Allah for specified crimes. 
hakam: an arbiter. 
halal: lawful in the SharVa. 
haraj: an impediment. 
haram: unlawful in the SharVa. 



harbl: a belligerent. 

hasan: an adjective describing a married person, from him, a fortress. A 
person who has become muhsin by marriage is subject to the full 
hadd punishment of death for zind. 

hayd: menstruation. 

hiba: a gift. 

hid ana: custody of minors. 

hlla: legal evasion. The plural is hiyal. 

hill: the boundaries of a Haram. 

hima: fence, protective zone, pasture-land devoted solely to grazing 
livestock from the zakdt or to be used in jihad. 

hiqqa: a three-year-old she-camel. The proper age for a camel paid in 
zakdt for 46 to 60 camels. 

hiraba: highway robbery, brigandage. There is a lot of diversity between 
the schools as to what this applies to. It involves armed robbery. 
Malik says that it can take place inside a town, but Abu Hanlfa says 
that it must be outside of it. The penalties vary according to the 
severity of the offence. Ad-Dasuql, a Maliki faqlh, says that rape 
under force of arms is hiraba. 

hirz: a place where property is customarily kept, like a house, shop, tent. 

hisba: lit. computation or checking, but commonly used in reference to 
what is known as amr bi'l-ma'riifwa'n-nahy 'an al-munkar: promo- 
tion of good and prevention of evil. 

hiyal: legal devices, evasions, observing the letter, but not the spirit of 

the law. 
hujja (plural hijaj): courtroom evidence. 
ibaha: permissibility. 
'Id: a festival, either the festival at the end of Ramadan or at the time of 

the Hajj. 
'Id al-Adha: the Hajj festival which takes place on the 10th of the 

month of DhuT-Hijja. 
'Id al-Fitr: the festival at the end of the fast of Ramadan on the 1st of 

the month of Shawwal. 
'idda: a period after divorce or the death of her husband during which a 

woman must wait before re-marrying. 



idtirar: compulsion. 

iftar: breaking the fast. 

iftirash: a form of sitting in the prayer in which you sit on the left foot 
which is on its side, while the right foot is resting upright on the bot- 
tom of its toes with the heel up, (Cf. lawarruk). 

ihdad: the period of mourning observed by a widow. 

ihram: a state in which one is prohibited to practise certain deeds that 
are lawful at other times, necessary when performing the rites of 
'wnra and hajj* 

ihsan: the state of being muhsin, an unblemished reputation sexually of 
someone who is or has been married. 

ihtiba': a sitting posture, putting one's arms around one's legs while sit- 
ting on the hips. 

ihya* al-mawat: "revival of dead lands", bringing wasteland into culti- 

ijbar: the power of compulsion exerted on someone unable to manage 
their own affairs. 

ikrah: duress, undue influence. 

Ila': a vow by a husband to abstain from sexual relations with his wife. 
If four months pass, it is considered a divorce. (See zihar). 

ima': implication, implicit indication. 

imam: Muslim religious or political leader; leader of Muslim congrega- 
tional worship. The plural is a'imma, 

imsak: in fasting, it is abstinence from things which break the fast. 

imtithal: compliance. 

iqatna: the call which announces that the obligatory prayer is about to 

iqrar: confession; approval, acknowledgement. 

irtidad: apostasy, 

'Isha': the night prayer. 

ishtimal as-samma': wearing clothes in the following two ways: 

1. Covering one shoulder with a garment and leaving the other bare. 

2. Wrapping oneself in a garment while sitting in such a way that 
nothing of that garment covers one's private parts. 



istiftah: the opening supplication recited at the beginning of the prayer 
(which is not done by Malikls). 

isiihada: bleeding from the womb of a woman outside her ordinary peri- 

istijmar: wiping the anus with stones. 

istimrar: continuity. 

istinja': washing the private parts with water. 

istinshaq: drawing water up the nose which is part of wudu'. 

Istisqa': the Rain prayer of two rak'ats, performed outside the town, 
with two khutbas after which those present turn their cloaks the 
other way around. 

i'tikaf: seclusion, while fasting, in a mosque, particularly in the last ten 
days of Ramadan. 

*itq: manumission of a slave. 

jadha'a: a four-year-old she-camel. The proper age for a camel paid in 
zakat for 61 to 75 camels, 

ja'iz: permitted, another term for mubah. 

jam': joining two fard prayers together, which is permitted when travel- 
ling or in extremely bad weather. The prayers which may be joined 
are Zuhr and 'Asr, and Maghrib and 'Isha'. 

jam* taqdlm: 'early' combination of two fard prayers. 

jam* ta'khir: 'delayed' combination of two fard prayers. 

jama'a: the main body of the Muslim community; also designates the 
group prayer. 

janaba: major ritual impurity requiring a ghusl: intercourse, sexual dis- 
charge, menstruation, childbirth. 

janabat: penalties, torts. 

janaza: funeral. 

jawrab: socks (not to be confused with khuff, leather socks). 

jizya: a protection tax payable by non-Muslims as a tribute to the 
Muslim ruler. 

julus: sitting, particularly the sitting position in the prayer, (cf. qu'ud), 

junub: being in a state of janaba. 

kafa'a: legal capacity, also called ahltya. 

kafan: the shroud for the dead. 



kaffara: atonement, prescribed way of making amends for wrong 
actions, especially missed obligatory actions. 

kanz: hoarded up gold, silver and money, the zakdt of which has not 
been paid. 

karaha (plural karahiyya): abhorrence, abomination. 

khitan: circumcision. 

khitba: marriage proposal. 

khiyana: breach of trust. 

khuff: leather socks. 

khul': a form of divorce initiated by the wife from her husband by giv- 
ing him a certain compensation, or by returning back the mahr 
which he gave her. 

khums: the fifth taken from the booty which is given to the ruler for dis- 

khusuma: litigation, quarrel 

khutba an-nikah: a speech delivered at the time of concluding the mar- 
riage contract. 

kitaba: a contract by which a slave acquires his freedom against a future 
payment, or instalment payments, to his master. 

kusuf : solar eclipse. 

li*an: mutual cursing, a form of divorce which involves oaths taken by 
the wife and husband when he accuses her of committing adultery 
and she denies it. They can never remarry after this. 

luqata: an article found (lit. 'picked up'). The finder must advertise the 
article for a year unless it is insignificant or perishable. 

mabrur: accepted, as in an accepted hajj, 

madarr: harmful. 

mafqud: a missing person whose whereabouts is unknown. 

mafrtid: obligatory. 

mahkama: court, tribunal. 

mahr: dower given by a husband to his wife on marriage. 

mahram: a person with whom marriage is forbidden. 

Majalla: a uniform codification of the laws of contract and obligation 
based on Hanafi law, published between 1286/1869 and 1293/1876. 



makruh: abominable, reprehensible in the Shan' a, disliked but not for- 

mammVa: prohibited in the SharVa. 

maqdur: within one's capability. 

ma' quia (plural ma'aqil): blood money. 

mas'ala (plural masa'il): issue, problem, case, a matter proposed for 

mash: wiping over leather socks when doing wudu' rather than washing 

the feet. 
masnun: sunna. 
ma wall : the plural of mawla. 
rnawat: barren uncultivated land. 
mawla (plural mawala): a person with whom a tie of wala' has been 

established, usually by having been a slave and then set free. It is 

also used for a type of political patronage. 
mayyit: a corpse, a dead body of a human being. 
mazalim: "injustices", complaints, esp. the appellate court for the 

redress of grievances. 
mu'allafa al-qulub: giving a share of the zakat to reconcile people's 

hearts. This share was discontinued by 'Umar ibn al-Khattab on the 

basis of siydsa shar'Tyya. 
mubah: permissible, permitted; something for which there is neither 

reward nor punishment. Also called ja'iz. 
mudabbar: a slave who has been given a tadbfr, a contract to be freed 

after his master 5 s death. 
mufsida: what invalidates acts of worship in the SharVa. 
mufti: someone qualified to give a legal opinion oifatwa. 
muhallil: a man who marries a woman who has been trebly divorced on 

the condition that he then divorce her in order that her first husband 

can remarry her. Marriage solely for this purpose is not permitted, 
muhdith: someone in a state of minor ritual impurity, (See hadath). 
muhsan: (or muhsiri) a person who has been married. (See hasan). 
muhsana: the feminine of muhsan. As well as meaning a person guard- 
ed by marriage, it also refers to a chaste unmarried free woman, who 



is sexually protected, as opposed to an unmarried slave woman over 

whom her master has sexual rights. 
mukallaf: a competent person in full possession of his faculties; subject 

of legal obligation, personally obligated. 
mukatab: a slave who has been given a kitaba, a contract to buy his 

muqasama: taking part of a governor's wealth when he retires to be 

used for the good of the community. 
muqtadl: "one appointed", the person who stands behind the Imam in 

the prayer and calls out the iqama and takbir. 
murtadd: an apostate, recanter. 
musalla: a place for praying. 'Id prayers are normally held outside the 

mosque at a musalla; the term is sometimes used for a prayer mat. 
mustahabb: what is recommended, but not obligatory in acts of worship 

in the Shari'a. 
musta'man: a non-Muslim who has entered Ddr al-Islam under an 

aman or safe-conduct. 
mut'a: temporary marriage, which is forbidden in Sunmfiqh; severance 

gift after divorce. 
mu'takif: one who is in a state of Vtikaf. 
nadhr: a vow. 

nadiha: a camel used for agricultural purposes. 

nafaqa: maintenance, adequate support (especially of immediate fami- 
nafi: banishment; negation. 

nafila (plural nawafil): supererogatory act of worship. 
nahd: sharing the expenses of a journey or gathering the journey food of 

the travellers together to be distributed among them in equal shares. 
nahr: the slaughtering of camels only, done by cutting the carotid artery 

at the root of the neck; the Day of Nahr is the 10th of Dhu'l-Hijja on 

which the pilgrims slaughter their sacrifices. 
nahy: prohibition. 
najasa: impurity. 
najis: impure, the opposite of tahir. There are variations in opinion as to 



what are najasat. However, wine and other intoxicants are regarded 
as najis by allfiiqaha'. 

naw 4 : species. 

nawafil: plural of nafila. 

nazar: examination, reasoning. 

nifas: lochia, bleeding after childbirth. 

nisab: minimum. The minimum for the hadd of theft is three dirhams or 
a quarter of a dinar, and there are various minimums for zakat 
becoming payable: in money it is 200 dirhams or 20 dinars, in pro- 
duce 5 wasqs, and in livestock 5 camels, 30 cattle, and 40 sheep or 

niyaba: proxy, representation. 

nushuz: violation of marital duties on the part of of the husband or wife. 

nusk: religious act of worship. 

nusuk: a sacrifice. 

qabd: when standing in prayer, to place the right hand on the back of the 
left hand or on the wrist. This is done by Shaft 'Is, Hanbalis, HanafTs, 
and some Malikls. It is considered sunna and not wajib. 

qada': belated performance of an obligation; the office of qadi; the deci- 
sion of the qadi. 

qadhf: slanderous accusation; accusing a chaste person of fornication. 
Unless the accusation is supported by the testimony of four male 
witnesses, the penalty is eighty lashes. 

qadi (plural quda): a judge, qualified to judge all matters in accordance 
with the SharVa and to dispense and enforce legal punishments. 

qar* (plural qufu'): a term used in reference to 'idda which either means 
becoming pure after a menstrual period, or the menstrual period 
itself. (See Qur'an 2:228). 

qara'in al-ahwal: circumstantial evidence. 

qasama: an oath taken by fifty members of a tribe or locality to refute 
accusations of complicity in unclear cases of homicide. 

qasim: distributer, as of zakat, 

qibla: the direction faced in the prayer by Muslims which is towards the 
Ka'ba in Makka. Their first qibla had been towards Jerusalem and 



so the early Muslims had prayed towards two qiblas, a quality which 

is sometimes used to describe the fact that they became Muslim 

early on. 
qinn: a slave who was born a slave. 
qisas: retaliation. 

qiyam: standing, particularly the standing position in the prayer. 
qudra: power, ability, capacity. 
qunut: a supplication said in the prayer, particularly in the standing 

position after rukit' in the Subh prayer, 
quru J : the plural of qar\ 
qussam: plural of qasim, 
qu'ud: sitting position during the prayer. 
rada': or ridd* or rada' a, suckling, which produces an impediment to 

marriage of foster-kinship, 
rajm: stoning to death. 
rak'a(t): a unit of the prayer consisting of a series of standings, bowing, 

prostrations and sittings, 
ratib (plural rawatib): a regular form of litany; or the regular Imam in a 

mosque who receives a regular salary from the treasury, 
rida': see rada'. 
ridda: apostasy. 
rifq: leniency. 
rikaz: treasure buried in pre-Islamic times which is recovered without 

great cost or effort. 
rukhsa: concession or concessionary law, law which is modified due to 

the presence of mitigating factors; legal allowance. 
rukn (plural arkan): essential ingredient; used to describe the five essen- 
tial 'pillars' of Islam. 
ruku' : bowing, particularly the bowing position in the prayer. 
ruqba: kind of gift in the form of a house given to somebody to live in 

as long as he is alive. 
sadaq: another word for mahr. 
sadl: when in the standing position, to pray with the arms at one's sides. 

This is done by most Malikis and the Shi 'a. 



sahw: forgetting; here it means forgetting how many rak'ats a person 
has prayed in which case he should perform two additional prostra- 
tions of sahw to compensate. 

sa'iba: a she-camel which used to be let loose in free pastures in the 
name of idols, gods, and false deities. 

sajda: the act of prostration. 

salab: belongings (arms, horse, etc.) of a deceased warrior killed in a 

Salat al-Haja: the prayer of need, asking for that need to be fulfilled, 
which consists of four to twelve rak'ats. 

Salat al-Khawf: the shortened fear prayer which is done in times of 

sariqa: theft. 

sawafi: state lands. 

shaf: a supererogatory prayer of two rak'ats performed with the witr. 

shahada: bearing witness, particularly bearing witness that there is no 
god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. It is 
one of the pillars of Islam. It is also used to describe legal testimony 
in a court of law. 

shahada az-zur: perjury, false testimony. 

shah id (plural shuhud): a witness. 

shart (plural shurut): qualification, precondition. 

shighar: a forbidden form of marriage agreement whereby a man gave 
his daughter in marriage to another man who in return gave his 
daughter in marriage to him, without either of them paying any 
mahr to their respective brides. 

shuf 'a: the right of pre-emption in property. 

shura: consultation. 

shurta: urban police. 

sirq: theft. 

sujud: prostration. 

sulh: reconciliation, or comprehensive peace settlement. 

sultan: an abstract noun meaning power, especially that of government. 
It has come to designate a king or ruler who governs by virtue of his 



suctan: plural of sunna; also collections ofhadlth. 

Sunna: the customary practice of a person or group of people. It has 
come to refer almost exclusively to the practice of the Messenger of 
Allah and of the first generation of Muslims. 

sutra: an object placed in front of someone praying so that people will 
pass beyond it and not come between him and the qibla. 

ta'addl: violation of trust; delict. 

ta'arud: conflict of evidence. 

tabdil: substitution, replacement of an old custom with a new one. 

tadblr: a contract given by a master to a slave whereby the slave will be 
freed after the master dies. Tadblr also means management, direc- 

ta'dlya: transferability. 

tafwid: delegation of authority, proxy. 

taghyfr: change and difference in customs. 

tahajjud: voluntary prayers performed at night between i hhd > and Fajr. 

tahara: purification, purity. 

tahir: pure. 

taMyat al-masjid: "the greeting of the mosque", two rak'ats which are 
prayed on entering a mosque. 

tahlil: an intervening marriage contracted for the sole purpose of legalis- 
ing remarriage between a divorced couple; saying, "la ilaha 
illa'llah", "There is no god but Allah". (See mutyallil). 

tahsil: actualising, obtaining. 

takattuf: another term for qabd. Most Shi'a call it takfir (covering) and 
claim that it is haram, 

takbir: saying "Allahu Akbaf\ "Allah is greater". 

takbir al-ihram: the takbir which begins the prayer. 

taklff : liability, obligation. 

fakllf ma la yutaq: impossible obligation. 

talaq: divorce. 

talaq al-ba 3 in: final irrevocable divorce. 

talaq ar-raj'I: a divorce which can be revoked (e.g. the first or second 



tanfidh: implementation, execution. 

tarabbus: waiting, observing. 

tarawih: prayers at night in Ramadan. 

tarjf : repeating the shahada in the adhan in a loud voice after first say- 
ing it in a low voice. 

tark al-huzuz: forgoing lawful rights. 

tartib: proper sequence of actions in the prayer, wudu\ hajj or any other 
act of worship. 

tashahhud: lit. to make shahada. In the context of the prayer, it is a for- 
mula which includes the shahada and is said in the final sitting posi- 
tion of each two rak'at cycle. 

tashll: convenience, facilitation. 

tasfim: the greeting, "As-salamu 'alaykum". It terminates the prayer. 

tatawwu': voluntary. 

tawaqquf: conditionally. 

tawarruk: a form of sitting in the prayer with the left buttock on the 
ground and the left foot under the right thigh, emerging from under 
the right ankle, while the right foot is resting upright on the bottom 
of its toes with the heel up. The other form is iftimsh. Malik says 
that tawarruk is sunna in both tashahhuds while Abu Hanffa says 
that iftirash is sunna in both. 

tayammum: purification for prayer with clean dust, earth, or stone, 
when water for ghusl or wudW is either unavailable or would be 
detrimental to health. 

ta'zir: deterrence, discretionary penalty determined by the qadl. 

tazkiya: compurgation, testing the reliability of a witness, cross-exami- 

umm walad: a slavegirl who had born her master's child. She cannot be 
sold and becomes free upon her master's death. The child is free 
from birth. 

'uqubat: plural of 'uquba (lit. punishment), penal or criminal law. 

wajib: a necessary part of the SharVa but not obligatory, although it is 
sometimes used as a synonym for fard, 

wakfl: person who is an authorized representative, agent or proxy. 



wala': the tie of clientage established between a freed slave and the per- 
son who frees him, whereby the freed slave becomes integrated into 
the family of that person. 

wall: a guardian who is responsible for another person. 

waqf: also habous, an unalienable endowment for a charitable purpose 
which cannot be given away or sold to anyone. 

witr: lit. "odd", a single rak'at prayed immediately after the shaf which 
makes the number of sunna prayers uneven. The Hanafis consider 
that it consists of the three rak'ats prayed together with a single 
salam. It is considered wajib. 

wudu': ritual washing with water to be pure for the prayer of hands, 
mouth, nostrils, face, forearms, head, ears and feet. 

yanun (plural ayman): oath. Oaths form a complementary role to evi- 
dence in Islamic law. If a person is accused of an offence without 
the evidence of sufficient witnesses of good standing, he or she may 
swear an oath as to his or her innocence to avert punishment. 

zakat: one of the rive pillars of Islam. It is a wealth tax paid on certain 
forms of wealth: gold and silver, staple crops, livestock, and trading 
goods. As regards its distribution, see Qur'an 9:60. 

zakat al-fitr: a small obligatory head-tax imposed on every Muslim who 
has the means for himself and his dependants. It is paid once yearly 
at the end of Ramadan, 

zihar: an oath by the husband that his wife is like his mother's back, 
meaning she is unlawful for him. It was a form of divorce in the 
Jahiliyya, not permitted in Islam. 

zina: unlawful sex, adultery, fornication. 


Usui al-Fiqh Terms 

'adat: customary usage, a legal principle in the Maliki school. "Those 
obligations which aim at the protection of human life, the intellect 
faculty and other things in this world." (ash-Shatibi). 

adilla: plural of dalil, proofs, items of evidence. 

ahkam: the plural of hukm: laws, values and ordinances. 

al-ahkam at-taklifiyya: legal values resulting directly from commands 
which impose obligations, 

Ahl ar-ra'y : people of opinion. It is used to refer to people who make 
use of the principle of ra 'y to arrive at rulings. 

a'immat al-madhahib: plural of imam al-madhhab; Imams of the legal 

'amal: action, normative practice, precedent, juridical practice. 

'amal ahl al-Madlna: the normative practice of the people of Madina 
(meaning the first three generations), one of the fundamental princi- 
ples of Maliki flqh. 

amara (plural amdrat): evidence or an indication which leads to a spec- 
ulative reasoning, as opposed to dalil, which leads to a definitive 

'amm: generally applicable, in reference to a Qur'anic ruling. 

amr (plural awamir> umur): command, matter, affair. 

amr bi'1-ma'ruf wa'n-nahy 'an al-munkar: promotion of good and 
prevention of evil. This is a duty for all Muslims which is prescribed 
in theQur'an. 

al-amr al-imijtami' 'alayhi: "The generally agreed-on way of doing 
things with us", an expression used by Imam Malik to denote the 
consensus of the people of Madina. 

asbab: legal causes, plural of sabab. 


al-asbab waT-wasa'it 

al-asbab wa'1-wasa'it: literally "causes and means", intermediary 

Ashab ar-Ra'y: speculative jurists. (See AM ar-ra'y). 

ashbah wa naza T ir: "resemblances and similarities", the study of the 
semantic structure of the law. 

asl (plural usul): root on whose basis analogy is sought, primary princi- 
ple, textual basis. 

athar (plural atkar): lit. impact, trace, vestige; also deeds and prece- 
dents of the Companions. 

'azima: strict or unmodified law which remains in its original rigour due 
to the absence of mitigating factors. Regularity, not opting for 
allowance or discretion permitted by the Lawgiver in performing an 

bayan: clarification, elucidation: either of the substance of a meaning in 
the Qur'an or of the meaning of that substance. 

daf* al-haraj: removal of hardship. 

dalala: explanation, clarification. Indication, signification, textual impli- 
cation. Sub-categories of this vary according to school. For instance, 
the Hanaffs have four categories while the ShafTis have five. 

dalala asliya: essential signification. 

dalala al-iqtida': the required meaning indicated by the text, 

dalala al-ishara: alluded meaning. 

dalala al-mafhum: implied meaning. 

dalala al-mantuq: pronounced meaning of a text. This is sub-divided 
into dalala al-iqtida ' and dalala al-ishara. 

dalala an~nass: inferred or implied meaning of a text. 

dalala tabi'a: subordinate denotation. 

d alalia t: textual implications. 

dalil (plural adilla)'. proof, indication, evidence; also a guide. 

darura: overriding necessity. 

daruri: necessary, a priori, a grade of maslaha, "Indispensible in sus- 
taining the good {masalih)" (ash-Shatibi). 

ad-daruriyat al-khamsa: "the five essential values": religion, life, intel- 
lect, lineage, and property. The objectives {maqasid) of the SharVa 
involve the promotion and protection of these values. The principle 



of masalih mursala is based on achieving the realisation of these 

dawr: arguing in a circle. 

fahwa al-khitab: superior meaning, when the implied meaning of a text 
is superior to the pronounced meaning. 

fath adh-dhara'i ( : "facilitating the means"; it entails making the means 
to what is obligatory also obligatory. 

furu ( : (the plural of far') branches or subsidiaries, such as furu" al-fiqh, 
that is, the branches of fiqh, 

ghalbat az-zann: predominant probability, most likely to happen. 

ghayr mu'akkada: a sunna which is ghayr mu'akkada is one which 
was done sometimes but not regularly, (cf. mu'akkada). 

haja: general need. 

haji: 'Those masalih which are needed in order to extend the purpose of 
the objectives and to remove the strictness of the literal sense, the 
application of which leads mostly to impediments and hardships and 
eventually to the disruption of the objectives." (ash-Shatibi). Such 
things are supplementary to the five essential values and their 
neglect would lead to hardships. 

haqiqi: literal, real, original, 

haqq al-'abd: right of man, or private right; the right of the injured per- 
son to demand redress. 

haqq Allah: right of Allah or public right; the punishment which the 
judge must inflict for certain crimes. 

hujja (plural hijaj)x courtroom evidence; also an authority. 

hujjiya: producing the necessary proof or authority to validate a rule or 

hukm (plural ahkam): law, value or ruling of the SharVa. Hukm is the 
legal ruling on the status of something. The five values are: 1) obli- 
gatory ifard or wajib)\ 2) sunna or recommended (mandub); 3) per- 
missible (mubdh); 4) offensive (makruh); and 5) unlawful (haram). 

al-hukm at-takGfi: defining law, law which defines rights and obliga- 

al-hukm al-wad'I: declaratory law, that is, law which regulates the 
proper implementation of al-hukm at-taklifi, such as by expounding 
the conditions, exceptions and qualifications thereof. 


Ubara an-nass 

'ibara an-nass: explicit meaning of a given text which is borne out by 
its words. 

idtirari: (obligation) imposed on man without his choice. 

ihtiyat: caution, precautionary measure. 

ijma': consensus, particularly the consensus of the people of knowledge 
among the Muslims on matters of fiqh. There are several sub-cate- 
gories of ijma': ijma' muhassal (acquired consensus) which is con- 
cluded directly by the mujtahid; ijma manqul (transmitted consen- 
sus) which is established by means of reports; ijma 1 akl al-Madlna 
(consensus of the Madinans), a principle of Malikl^ft; ijma' sarlh 
(explicit consensus), expressed by all; and ijma' sukuti (tacit or pre- 
sumptive consensus) on which some give an opinion while the rest 
are silent. 

ijtihad: to struggle, to exercise personal judgement in legal matters. The 
most basic form of ijtihad is to form an analogy based on a legal 
cause {'ilia). 

ijtihad bayani: "explanatory ijtihad\ the ijtihad which involves inter- 
preting source materials and existing evidence. 

ijtihad maslahl: legal reasoning on the basis of maslaha. 

ikhtilaf: controversial questions, juristic disagreement. 

ikhtisas: restrictive interpretation. 

'ilal: plural of 'ilia. 

'ilia: underlying reason, effective cause, ratio legis. Ma'na and sabab 
are synonyms. 

iqrar: approval, affirmation. 

iqtida': following, authority. 

iqtida' an-nass: the required meaning of a given text. 

ishara: textual indication. 

ishara an-nass: alluded meaning of a text. 

istidlal: deductive reasoning. 

istihsan: to deem something good, juristic preference; to decide in 
favour of something which is considered good by the jurist, over and 
against the conclusion that may have been reached by analogy. 

istikhraj: extraction of rulings from the sources. 



istinbat: inference, deducing a somewhat hidden meaning from a given 

istishab: presumption of continuity, or presuming continuation of the 
status quo ante. There are various types of istishab: istishab al- 
'adam al-asili (presumption of original absence) in which the fact 
that a law did not exist in the past leads to the presumption that it is 
still non-existent unless the contrary is proved; istishab al-wujud aU 
asilT (presumption of original presence) which is like the saying 
"possession is nine-tenths of the law"; istishab al-hukm (presumed 
continuity of laws and principles), in which the provisions of the 
SharVa are presumed to apply unless there is contrary evidence 
(both in judgements and in areas which are not subject to judge- 
ment); and istishab al-wasf (continuity of attributes), e.g. water is 
pure unless there is evidence to the contrary, 

istislah: consideration of public interest; to decide in favour of some- 
thing because it is considered good (maslaha), and more beneficial 
than anything decided otherwise. A method of interpreting already 
existing rules by disengaging the spirit of these rules from the letter 
of the law so that exceptions and extensions are reached which com- 
mand practical utility and correspond to the fundamental goals of 
the law. 

jawaz 'aqll: logical possibility. 

jumal al-fara'id: highly general statements in the Qur'an. 

junihur: dominant majority. 

jumla: general, unspecific. 

khabar: news, report. 

khabar wahid: isolated hadfth; a report coming down by a single isnad 
or from a single source. (Also called khabar al-khdssa.) 

khafl: hidden, obscure, also refers to a category of unclear words. 

khass: specifically applicable, particular. 

la darar wa la dirar: "Do not inflict injury nor repay one injury with 
another," a hadiih which is the basis for the legal principle of al- 
masalih al-mursala. 

lahn al-khitab: parallel meaning, if the understood meaning of a text is 
equivalent to the pronounced meaning. 

la madhhabl: someone who does not believe in adhering to a madhhab. 



madarra: harm. 

madhhab: a school of law founded on the opinion of bfaqih. The four 
main schools now are HanafT, Maliki, Shafi'I and HanbalL There are 
also madhhabs which have ceased to exist: the Awza'i, Zahiri, Jariri 
and the madhhab of Sufyan ath-Thawrl. The Shi'a also designate 
their fiqh as the 'Ja'fari madhhab' after Ja'far as-Sadiq. 

mafhum al-mukhalafa: divergent meaning, an interpretation which 
diverges from the obvious meaning of a given text. It has several cat- 

mafhum al-muwafaqa: harmonious meaning, an implied meaning 
which is equivalent to the pronounced text. 

mafsada: evil, namely anything which violates ad-daruriydt al-khamsa, 
the five essential values of religion, life, intellect, lineage and prop- 
erty; the opposite of maslaha. 

mahkum fih: the subject matter of hukm; the acts, rights and obligations 
which constitute the subject-matter of a command, prohibition, or 

majazi: metaphorical. 

ma'na (plural ma 'ant) : hxfiqh, a causal factor. Otherwise, 'meaning'. 

ma'na ifradi: individual meaning. 

ma'na tarkibi: contextual meaning. 

manafi': (personal) advantages. 

manat: anchor, basis of a rule. 

mandub: commendable, recommended. 

manfa'a: benefit, utility. 

mansukh: what is abrogated or superseded, particularly with regard to 
earlier Qur'anic dyats and hadiths which were subsequently 
replaced by later ones, thereby altering the legal judgements or 
parameters which had initially been expressed in the earlier ones. 

maqsid (plural maqasid): intention, goal, end, objective. 

masalih mursala: considerations of public interest, human welfare, util- 
ity, welfare not explicitly supported by the text. This is a major prin- 
ciple in Maliki and HanbaEJzgA. 

mashhiir: famous or widely ascribed to. 

maskut *anhu: matters on which the Lawgiver is silent. 



maslaha: considerations of public interest, human welfare, utility, wel- 
fare, human good. "What concerns the subsistence of human life, 
the wholeness of his way of life, and the acquiring of what man's 
emotional and intellectual faculties require of him in their absolute 
sense." (ash-Shatibi). 

maslaha mulgha: a nullified or discredited benefit. The Lawgiver has 
nullified it explicitly or by an indication. 

mu'akkada: a sunna which is mu'akkada is an emphatic one, also 
known as sunna al-huda, one regularly done. (cf. ghayr mu'akkada). 

mu'amalat: secular transactions, "acts concerning those masalih of men 
that concern his fellow beings." (ash-Shatibl). 

mu'aridat: plural of mu'arida, countervailing considerations. 

mubln: clear, evident. 

muhkam: perspicuous, a word or text conveying a firm and unequivocal 

mujmal: ambivalent, requires details and explanation, ambiguous, refer- 
ring to a category of unclear words. 

mujtahid: someone qualified to carry out ijtihad. 

mujtahid mutlaq: the absolute mujtahid who is able to undertake 
ijtihad in all aspects of the din, like the founders of the various 
schools. Such a person is also called mujtahid fi'sh-Shar'. 
mujtahid madhhab: the mujtahid of the school who makes ijtihad 
only within his own madhhab. (like Qadi Ibn 'Arabi, al-Muzanl, Ibn 
Taymiyya, and Zufar). 

mujtahid mas'ala: the mujtahid in a specific issue, e.g. a person 
able to take ijtihad in one special area e.g. economics, contracts, 
marriage etc. (like Abu Bakr al-Abharl, al-Marwazi and Abu'l- 
Hasan al-Karkhi). 

mujtahid mukharrij: one of those who practise takhrij, who do not 
extrapolate rulings {ahkam) but who are conversant enough with 
their subject to indicate which view is preferable and suitable. 
mujtahid murajjih: someone who is competent to make compar- 
isons and distinguish the correct, preferred (rdjih) and agreed upon 
views from weak ones (like al-Qurtubi, Ibn Qudama, an-Nawawi, 
and al-Marghinam). 



mujtahid musahhih: someone who can distinguish between the 
apparent and the obscure views. Textbook writers fall into this cate- 

mula'im: suited, consistent. 

munasaba: appropriateness. 

munasib: appropriate, in harmony with the basic purpose of the law; 

mundabita: stipulative. 

muqabala wa-tashih: formal system of checking and correcting. 

muqaddima: prerequisite. 

muqallid: a person who practises taqlid, not performing ijtihad himself 
but instead following the legal opinion already arrived at by a muj- 

muqarin: associative. 

muqayyad: restricted, qualified, conditional. 

mura'at al-khilaf: allowance for disagreeing opinion. 

mursal: a hadith in which a man in the generation after the Companions 
quotes directly from the Prophet without mentioning the Companion 
from whom he received it. (See irsal). 

mushawara: consultation. 

mushawir: consultant, the mufti appointed to assist the qadi. 

mushkil: difficult, also a category of unclear words. 

mushtarak: homonym, a word or phrase imparting more than one 

mutafaqqih: a beginner in a madrasa. 

mutawatir: a hadith which is reported by a large number of reporters at 
all stages of the isnad. 

mutlaq: unrestricted, unqualified, absolute, simple. 

naql: transmission. 

nasikh: that which abrogates. 

naskh: abrogation. 

nass: unequivocal, clear injunction, an explicit textual meaning. 

nazar: examination, reasoning, intellectual examination, thinking upon 
a thing and trying to understand it. 



nazar ff'1-mazalim: investigation of complaints. 

nazara: debate. 

nazila: unprecedented legal question. 

nazir: philosopher, debater, investigator. 

nazzar: someone who examines and decides questions of theology and 

nusus: plural of nass. 
nuzzar: plural of nazir. 

qada J bi't-ta'addl: judicial decision by extension of the original ruling. 
qanun: (from Greek 'canon'); civil law. 
qat'I: definitive, decisive, free of speculative content. 
qawa'id: foundations, general legal precepts which clarify the method 

of using ijtihad in a school; also the links which connect minor 

qiyas: logical deduction by analogy, one of the four main fundamental 

principles which can be utilised in reaching a judgement. 
qiyas al-adna: analogy of the inferior, the 'ilia is less evident in the new 

than in the original case. 
qiyas al-awla: analogy of the superior, the 'ilia is more evident in the 

new than in the original case. 
qiyas jail: a fortiori analogy. 
qiyas al-musawl: analogy of equals, the 'ilia is equally evident in the 

new and in the original case. 
qiyas nazari: theoretical analogy. 
quwwa: effectiveness. 
raf* al-haraj: removal of hardship. 
rajlh: preponderant, preferable. 
ra'y* opinion, personal discretion, a legal decision based on the use of 

common sense and personal opinion, used where there is no explicit 

guidance in the Qur'an and Surma and where it is not possible to use 

rijal: men, plural of rajul, used of the men who are the links in the chain 

of transmission or isnad of a hadith* 
riwaya: transmission of texts. 
rukhsa: concessionary law based on extenuating circumstances. 



sabab (plural asbab): cause, means of obtaining something. It is usually 
used to describe the cause of acts of devotion whereas ' ilia is not. 

sadd adh-dhara'i': to block the means which might possibly lead to 
undesired consequences. 

sahib: lit. companion, also a graduate student in a madrasa. 

sahlh: healthy and sound with no defects, used to describe an authentic 

sama': hearing something from someone. 

sanad: basis, proof, authority. 

as-sidr wa'I-taqsim: another term for takhrlj al-manat. 

sifa hukmiya: legal qualification. 

siyar: types of conduct. 

siyasa: a decision based on public interest. 

siyasa shar'iya: administration of justice according to Islamic law. 

ta'abbud: special act of worship; obedience, bondage to Allah, 
"Recourse only to what the Lawgiver has determined." (ash- 
Shatibi). "Non-intelligibility of meaning." (ash-Shatibi). 

ta'arud: conflict, when two pieces of evidence of equal strength conflict 
and appear to cancel each other out. 

ta*diya: transferability of the 'ilia. It must have an objective quality 
which can be applied to other cases (e.g. the principle of 'intoxica- 
tion' can be transferred from wine to other intoxicating substances.) 

tahqiq al-manat: refinement of the basis of the ruling. 

tahsjnlya (plural tahsinat): a grade of maslaha, "To adopt what con- 
forms to the best of practice, to avoid such manners as are disliked 
by the wise people." (ash-Shatibi). 

tajzi'a: the division of ijtihad into different categories (see under 

takalif 'ayniya: specific individual obligations. 

takalif kifa'iya: general societal obligations, 

takhfif: alleviation, laxity, commutation. 

takhrlj: extrapolation, 

takhrlj al-manat: deduction of the basis of a ruling. 

takhsis: enhanced degree of specification. 

takhyir: choosing between two or more alternatives. 



takmili: complementary. 

talib: a seeker of knowledge, a student. 

talflq: legal eclecticism, picking different judgements from different 

ta'lil: determination by the cause of command by logical and linguistic 

tanqlh al-manat: refinement of the basis of the ruling. 

taqdir: restoring the full meaning of the text by holding certain words to 
be 'understood 5 . 

taqdlri: hypothetical. 

taqlid: imitation; following the opinion of a mujtahid without consider- 
ing the evidence (dalil). 

tard: examination of a problem from all sides. 

tarjih: preponderance, a process only exercised by the most qualified 

tarjih al-adilla: weighing probative evidence. 

tar fib al-adilla: arrangement of proofs in order of strength. 

tasarruf: free disposal, personal initiative, discretionary action. 

tasarrufat fi'liya: torts (offences and technical offences). 

tasarrufat qawliya: legal transactions (contracts and unilateral transac- 

tawatur: the quality of being mutawatir. 

ta'wfl: allegorical interpretation. 

tawsra: flexibility, as takhfif, 

ta'yin: specifying, naming, identifying. 

turuq an-nazar: methods of investigation. 

'urf: common acknowledgement, customary practice. 

usul: plural of asl, the basic principles of any source, used mfiqh. 

usul al-fiqh: Islamic legal theory, legal methodology, theoretical 

usul al-Qanun: modern jurisprudence. 

usuli: legal theoretician. 

wafa' bi'l-'uhud: fulfilling contracts or undertakings as in "Honour My 
contract and I will honour your contract " (Qur'an 2:40). 



zahir: apparent, probablistic; a $ahir text can mean one of two or more 

zawahir: plural of lakir. 


Business Terms 

abdan: the plural of badan, "body", used in sharika al-abdan, partner- 
ship in physical labour for gain. 

'adl: equity; the root of this word refers to the balance obtained when 
the two pannier-bags on either side of a beast of burden are of equal 

ajal: a delay granted to the debtor for repayment of a loan or for the per- 
formance of an obligation. 

amana: a trust, a fiduciary relationship, a deposit on trust. 

'arnil: the agent who works with the qirad investment. 

a mln : trustee. 

'aqd (plural 'uqud): a contract. 

'aqid: the contracting party. 

*ard: merchandise, goods. 

'ariya: a kind of sale by which the owner of an 'arlya is allowed to sell 
fresh dates while they are still on the palms by means of estimation, 
in exchange for dried plucked dates. 

'ashir: public collector, one who collects tolls from non-Muslim traders 
entering Muslim territory. 

Ayat al-Mudayana: "the ayat of buying and selling," Qur'an 2:282, 
which requires witnesses to commercial contracts. 

'ayb (plural 'uyub): a defect in goods. 

*ayn: ready money, cash; a capital asset or object with material value. 

ba'i: a buyer. 

batil: null and void (a contract). 

bay' (plural buyu'): sale; there are various types of sale such as 
munabadha, mulamasa, muhaqala, mukhadara, hasa, etc. 

bida'a (plural bada'i): goods, merchandise; a share in a business ven- 

buyu': sales, the plural of bay'. 



caravanserai: merchant's inn, from the Persian karwan - company of 
travellers and sarai. It denotes a large inn which was government 

daman: surety, guarantee. 

dara'ib: general taxes imposed for public welfare by the government. 

darak: default in ownership. 

dayn (plural duyiin): a debt. 

dimar: bad debt, 

fasid: irregular, deficient. It is between valid and void. A batil contract is 
unlawful, whereas one which is fasid is lacking some necessary 
quality, which can sometimes be put right. 

faskh: cancellation, invalidation of a contract. 

furuq: subtle distinctions. 

ghabn: fraud, cheating, swindle; it can also mean "loss" when ghabn 
enters a contract without either of the parties being aware of it. 

ghabn fahish: a radical discrepancy between the market price of a com- 
modity and the price charged to the customer, determined by custom 

gharar: a sale in which uncertainty is involved. It is forbidden. The sale 
of futures falls into this category. Any contract in which the avail- 
ability of goods promised cannot be guaranteed is invalidated 
through this element of risk. 

gharar fahish: excessive gharar. 

gharar yasir: immaterial gharar, 

gharim (plural ghurama'): debtor. 

ghayr lazim: non-binding. 

ghayr matlub: not so intended. 

ghubn: damage, injury, fraud, lesion. Not much used in Islamic law 
because of the right of the option to withdraw from the transaction 
{haqq al-khiyar). 

habal al-habala: a forbidden business transaction in which a man buys 
the unborn offspring of a female animal. 

hajr: limitation of a person's legal competence. 

haqq al-khiyar: the option to withdraw from a transaction. There are 
three kinds (see khiyar). 



al-hasa: a type of sale whose outcome is determined by the throwing of 
a stone. (It involves gharar and therefore is forbidden). 

hawala: novation, the transference of a debt from one person to another. 
It is an agreement whereby a debtor is released from a debt by 
another becoming responsible for it 

hirfa (plural hiraf): profession, trade, guild. 

hisba: the function of market inspection. The person who undertakes 
this is called a muhtasib. Under the early khalifs, it was overseen by 
the khalif or the governor. Under the 'Abbasids, it became a separate 

ibda': type of informal commercial collaboration in which one party 
entrusts his goods to the care of another, usually to be sold, after 
which the latter, without any compensation, commission or profit, 
returns the proceeds of the transaction to the first party. 

iflas: bankruptcy. 

ihraz: original acquisition. 

ihtikar: cornering, hoarding. It is not allowed with essential staple 
items, such as grain, 

Ijab: the offer in contracts. It is followed by the acceptance {qabul). 

ijara: lease or hire, including work for a regular wage. 

ijara wa iqtina': hire purchase contract, lease-purchase financing, a 
modern development combining two concepts. The purpose here is 
not interest which must not play a part, The instalments are paid into 
an account and are invested in a muddraba. Capital and profit offset 
the cost. 

ilzam: binding. 

imda': ratification, signature. 

'inan: in Maliki law, a partnership limited to either a single commodity 
or a single transaction. For Malikls, Hanbalis and Hanafis contribu- 
tions cannot be credit, and for Shafi'is they cannot be chattels or 
labour. It implies mutual agency but not mutual surety with regard to 
the work undertaken and salary owed to employees. 

'inan sharikat a'mal (or abddri): partnership on the basis of labour. The 
Hanafis, Malikls and Hanbalis consider it to be a mufawada. 

intifa': transfer of usufruct. 

iqala: termination of a contract by mutual consent. 



'irban: variant of 'urbun. 

i'sar: insolvency. 

istidana: commercial commitment of the qirad by the agent in excess of 
the capital invested. 

istisna': contract of manufacture. 

'iwad: countervalue. 

jahbadh: officially appointed money examiner and money-changer. 

jins: genus, things of the same sort which cannot be exchanged with 
deferment unless it is same for same (e.g. for the Malikis, lead and 
zinc; wheat, barley and rye; maize, millet and rice; pulses; meat of 
all poultry; all fishes; meat of all quadrupeds.) Things done to them 
do not alter the genus, e.g. flour is still wheat. 

ju'al: contract to complete a specific job for a specific reward in a peri- 
od of time which is not specified. 

juzaf: sale where one of the countervails is roughly determined by 
mere viewing. For the Malikis, it is allowed when the quantity can 
be determined by weight or measure and is not an individual item. 
This would involve things like quantities of pelts, hides, etc. 

kafala: bail; the pledge given by someone to a creditor to ensure that the 
debtor will be present at a certain time and place. 

kafil: a guarantor of bail. 

kharaj: taxes imposed on revenue from land. Originally these were only 
applied to land owned by non-Muslims, 

khazzan: wholesaler dealer. 

khiyar: option to withdraw from a business transaction. Haqq al-khiyar 
is of three kinds: khiyar ar-ru'ya, the purchaser's right to reject the 
object after inspection; khiyar al-wasf, the option determined by 
quality open to either party; and khiyar al-'ayb, the option of dis- 
solving the contract if the goods are defective. 

khulta: a state where two properties are so mixed in a partnership that 
they cannot be separated. 

kira': hire of property. 

lazim: binding, 

madamln: a forbidden form of sale in which the foetus in the womb of a 
pregnant animal is sold. (cf. habal al-habala). 



magharim: unjust non-Shari'a taxes, unlawful taxes, fines. 

majlis al-'aqd: meeting of the contracting parties. 

mal (plural amwal): property, something that exists and can be utilised, 

res in commercio. 
mal hadir: ready cash. 
mal mutaqawwam: corporeal or incorporeal property with a lawful 

market price (like jewellery). 

mal ribawi: property susceptible of riba. 

malaqih: a forbidden sale, in which the stud properties of an animal are 

maniha (plural mana'ih): a sort of gift in the form of a she-camel or a 

sheep which is given to somebody temporarily so that its milk may 

be used and then the animal is returned to its owner. 
milk tamm: full ownership. 
mithli: a fungible property (an article which is measurable or weighable 

or counted by number when alike), e.g. money or grain. 
mudaraba: commenda, co-partnership, qirad, 
mudarib: agent manager, managing trustee. 
muf alias: bankrupt, insolvent 
mufawada: in Maliki law, a partemship in which each partner confers 

upon his colleague full authority to dispose of their joint capital in 

any manner intended to benefit their association. 
mugharasa: an agreement similar to the musaqa (sharecropping), but 

involving an orchard. 
muhal 'alayhi: the new debtor in the hawala. 
muhal lahu: creditor assignee. 
muhaqala: a forbidden sale in which, for instance, unharvested wheat 

was bartered for harvested wheat, or land was rented for wheat, or 

wheat for seeds. 
muhil: debtor assignor. 

muhtasib: the public functionary who supervises the market. 
mukhadara: the sale of non-mature agricultural products and the sale of 

dates which have not shown signs of ripeness. It is forbidden. 
mukhtar: free agent. 



Mukhtasar: an abridgement or summary, especially used for juristic 

manuals composed for mnemonic and teaching purposes. 
mukus: extra-S/zan'a taxes imposed by later Muslim states. 
mulamasa: a forbidden sale, in which the deal is completed if the buyer 

touches a thing without seeing or checking it properly. 
munabadha: a forbidden sale in which the deal is completed when the 

seller throws things towards the buyer without giving him a chance 

to see, touch or check them. 
muqaraba: a qirad, 

murabaha: partnership between an investor and a borrower in a profit- 
sharing re-sale of goods, in which the profit is pre-determined and 

musaqa: sharecropping contract; tending to an existing plantation in 

exchange for a share of the yield. 
musawama: sale of goods at any price mutually agreed upon by the 

buyer and seller. 
musharaka: partnership. 
mushtari: a seller. 

muwaqqat: contingent on a time limit. 
muzabana: a forbidden sale in which something whose number, weight, 

or measure is known is sold for something whose number, weight or 

measure is not known. 
muzara'a: fanning partnership, in which someone allows his land to be 

cultivated in exchange for a portion of the produce, (cf . musaqa). 
muzayada: auction. 
najash: a trick (of offering a very high price) for something without the 

intention of buying it but just to allure and cheat somebody else who 

really wants to buy it although it is not worth such a high price. 
najsh: bidding up, the practice of making a tender for goods without any 

intention of buying them with the aim of increasing their price. 
nama': productivity. 
naqdan: cash, specie, gold and silver. 
nasl'a: a sale in which the price is paid later for goods to be delivered at 

once; ownership in the goods passes at the time the contract is made, 
qabul: acceptance in a contract. 



qard: loan of money or something else. 

qard hasan: interest-free loan. 

qaysariyya: a market for fine goods. 

qirad: wealth put by an investor in the trustof an agent for use for com- 
mercial purposes, the agent receiving no wage, but taking a desi- 
ganted share of the profits after the capital has first been paid back 
to the investor. 

rabb al-mal: investor, beneficial owner, sleeping partner. 

rahn: mortgage; a pledge; pawn. 

rama: a form of usury. 

raqqad: long-distance trader. 

riba: usury, which is haram, whatever forms it takes, since it it involves 
obtaining something for nothing through exploitation. 

riba al~fadl: this involves any discrepancy in quantity in an exchange, 
for example, an exchange of goods of superior quality for more of 
the same kind of goods of inferior quality, e.g., dates of superior 
quality for dates of inferior quality in greater amount. This is forbid- 

riba al-Jahiliyya: pre-Islamic riba. 

riba jail: manifest riba. 

riba khafi: hidden riba. 

riba al-nasi'a: this involves a gap in time in an exchange of two quanti- 
ties, even if they match in quantity and quality, for example, interest 
on lent money. 

ribh: profit. 

rukhsa: an allowance for a transaction which would be forbidden if 
principles were strictly followed. The 'anya is an example of this. 

sahih: a valid sale. 

sakk (plural sukuk or sikak): the original of "cheque", a commercial 

salam: a sale in which the price is paid at once for goods to be delivered 
later; ownership in the goods passes at the time the contract is made. 

sarf: exchange of two currencies; a barter transaction. 

shall': a holder of the right of pre-emption. 

sharika: also shirka; partnership. 


sharlka al-a'mal 

sharika al-a'mal: (also sharika al-abdan\ labour partnership, based on 
the partners' work. 

sharika al-'aqd: contractual partnership. 

sharika al-mal: finance partnership, based on the partners' contribu- 
tions in gold or silver. 

sharika al-mulk: proprietary partnership. 

sharika fTl-bay': the transfer at cost price of an article from one person 
to another who in return becomes a partner in the ownership of the 
article and agrees to sell it for both of them, the profit to be shared. 

sharika wujuh: credit partnership. 

shirka: see sharika. 

shuFa: pre-emption; this includes shuf'a ash-sharik, the right of a co- 
owner in a property to have the first option of purchasing his part- 
ners' shares; shuf'a al-khalit, the right of partner to have the first 
option; and shufa al-jar, the right of the neighbour to have the first 
option of purchasing a neighbouring property. 

shurut (plural ofsharf): legal formularies, preconditions. 

slgha: wording, the form of a contract. 

sinf (plural asndf): guild, (see hirfa). 

suftaja: bill of exchange. It is defined as a loan of money repayable by 
the borrower to a person other than the lender in a different place. It 
is forbidden. 

suq: market. 

at-ta'atl: sale by "give and take" which is sanctioned by custom. 

tadamun: joint liability. 

tadmin: liability. 

tafwld: delegation of authority, proxy. 

takafii': principle of proportionality in Malik! partnership law requiring 
the distribution of profit and liability to correspond to the distribu- 
tion of the various components constituting the investment. 

takaful: mutual responsibility, mutual guarantee, the Muslim answer to 
insurance in which money is pooled and invested. 

talaqqi as-sila': going outside the town to buy goods before they arrive 
which leads to artificially high prices. It is forbidden- 

talfis: bankruptcy. 



tanfidh: implementation, execution. 

taqslr: personal fault or negligence. 

tawfiya: resale of goods with a discount from the original stated cost. 

thaman: price. 

thamaniyya: currency. 

tijara: commerce, trade. 

ujrat al-mithl: a fair salary. 

'uqud: the plural of 'aqd. 

'urbun: earnest money, handsel, down payment. 

( urf fasid: disapproved custom, which conflicts with the Shari'a and is 

therefore rejected, 
'urf sahih: valid or approved custom, which is in harmony with the 

Shari'a and is therefore accepted. 
'urud: chattels; moveable property, (except money and animals). 
'ushr: one tenth of the yield of land to be levied for public assistance. 
wadi'a: a deposit, something deposited for safekeeping. 
wakala: agency; power of attorney. 
wakil: agent. 
warehouses for merchants: see caravanserai for public ones. Private 

ones are khan in the East, funduq (from Gr. pandokeion - guest 

house) in the West. Also wakala. 
zuyuf : debased coins 


Inheritance Terms 

'amm: paternal uncle, 
'amma: paternal aunt. 
'aqll: sane and able to reason, and therefore capable of making a valid 

bequest and inheriting wealth. 
'aql: intellect, the faculty of reason. 
'asaba: male relatives on the father 5 s side who take the remaining estate, 

if any, after the heirs with fixed shares have received their shares. 

Sometimes translated as "universal heir". 
ashab al-fara'id: those entitled to fixed shares of inheritance by the 

Qur'an. They are: father, father's father however old, half-brother by 

the mother, husband, wife, daughter, son's daughter, however 

young, full sister, consanguine sister, uterine sister, mother, and 

asl: the basic estate. 
Ayat al-Mawarith: "the Verses of Inheritance Shares" in the Qur'an 

(4:1 1-12) which lay down the basic rules of inheritance. 
'awl: adjustment, accommodation by reducing inheritance shares when 

the shares exceed the total estate. 
bi'l-ma'ruf: according to reasonable usage, in a correct and commonly 

acceptable manner. 
bulugh: the age of puberty, physical sexual maturity. 
dayn: debt. Debts are paid first from the estate before it is divided 

between the heirs. 
dmVr-rahm (plural ulul-arham): relatives who receive none of the fixed 

shares of inheritance and are not among the 'asaba; blood relatives 

on the mother's side. 
fara'id: plural of farida, the fixed shares of inheritance as stipulated in 

the Qur'an. The shares are: V2, l M, V3, Ve, Vs, and 2 /3. 
farida (plural fara 'id): share of inheritance. 



hajb: preventing someone else from inheriting. Such exclusion can be 
total (hajb harmani) or partial (hajb nafsdni). 

irth: inheritance, division of the estate. 

s ilm al-fara'id: knowledge of the shares of inheritance. 

kalala: someone who dies without heirs. 

khal (plural akhwal): maternal uncle. 

khal a: maternal aunt. 

mafqud: missing person. He is considered to be still alive by the princi- 
ple of istishab, 

mahjub: excluded from inheritance by another heir. 

mani* (plural mawdni'): hindrance, obstacle, preventative cause which 
prevents inheritance. These can be: homicide, difference of religion, 

marad al-mawt: the sickness of which a person dies. He cannot dispose 

of two-thirds of his property in such an illness. 
ma'truh: mentally deficient, idiotic, senile; and therefore incapable of 

making a valid bequest. 
mawani*: legal impediments, the plural of mam'. 
ma want h: plural of mlrath, 
mlrath (plural mawdrlth): law of inheritance. 

mumayyiz: someone who is able to differentiate between good and evil, 
murith: person leaving the estate. 
musl: the one who makes a will. 
radd: the opposite of 'awl, redistribution of the residue of inheritance 

when the shares are less than the estate. This is distributed to the 

heirs according to their shares. 
rushd: the state of full intellectual maturity, able to conduct one's own 

tashih: rectification, multiplying the number of shares by the number of 

heirs to avoid fractions. 

taymiz: the age of discretion and understanding, at which a valid 

bequest can be made, 
warith (plural waratha): heir. 
wasaya: wills or testaments. The plural of wasiya. 



wasi: executor of a will. 

waslya: will, bequest. It can be made by a Muslim to a non-Muslim or 

vice versa, but not to one of the obligatory heirs already entitled to a 

fixed share. 
wilaya: guardianship of minor children of the deceased. 


Hajj Terms 

'Arafa: a plain fifteen miles to the east of Makka on which stands the 
Jabal ar-Rahma, the Mount of Mercy. One of the essential rites of 
hajj is to stand on 'Arafa on the 9th of Dhu'l-Hijja. 

badana (plural budri): a camel or a cow or an ox driven to be offered as 
a sacrifice, by the pilgrims at the sanctuary of Makka. (cf. hady). 

Baytu'llah: "the House of Allah", the Ka'ba. 

Bayt al-Haram: "the Sacred House", the Ka'ba. 

Dhat 'Irq: the mlqat of the people of Iraq. It is a ruined town two stages 
from Makka. 

DhuM-Hulayfa: the mlqat of the people of Madina, now called Bayar 

hady: an animal offered as a sacrifice during the hajj. 

Hajar al-Aswad: the Black Stone, 

hajj-al-asghar: 'umra. 

hajj al-ifrad: hajj by itself, the simplest way to perform hajj. 

hajj mabrur: a hajj accepted by Allah for being perfectly performed 
according to the Prophet's Sunna and with legally earned money. 

hajj al-qiran: the joined hajj. 

hajj at-tamattu': the interrupted hajj. 

Hajjat al-Wada*: the 'Farewell Hajj,' the final hajj performed by the 
Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. 

hajj (plural hujaj): a hadji, a pilgrim, someone who is performing or has 
performed the hajj. 

Haram: Sacred Precinct, a protected area in which certain behaviour is 
forbidden and other behaviour necessary. The area around the Ka'ba 
in Makka is a Haram, and the area around the Prophet's Mosque in 
Madina is a Haram. They are referred to together as the Haramayn, 
'Ihe two Harams'. 



al-Hasb: a place outside Makka where pilgrims go after finishing all the 
ceremonies of hajj. 

Hatim: the Hijr of the Ka'ba, or the wall of the Hijr over which is the 
spout (Mizdb). It is called this because it is where people crowd 
together to make supplications and, in so doing, press against 
(hatama) one another. 

Hijr: the unroofed portion of the Ka'ba which at present is in the form 
of a semi-circular compound towards the north of the Ka'ba. 

hujaj: pilgrims, the plural of hajj, 

ifada: "overflow", in the hajj when the pilgrims hasten from 'Arafat to 

ifrad: a form of hajj in which hajj is performed before 'umra. 

ihram: a state in which one is prohibited to practise certain deeds that 
are lawful at other times. The ceremonies of 'umra and hajj are per- 
formed in this state. When one assumes this state, the first thing one 
should do is to express mentally and orally one's intention to 
assume this state for the purpose of performing hajj or 'umra. Then 
talbiya is recited. Two sheets of unstitched cloth are the only clothes 
a man wears: an izar worn below one's waist and a rida' worn round 
the upper part of the body, 

istislam: literally submission, particularly greeting the Black Stone and 
the Yemeni corner of the Ka'ba during tawdf by kissing, touching or 
saluting with the outstretched hand. 

Jabal ar-Rahma: the Mount of Mercy at 'Arafa where it is said that 
Adam was re-united with Hawwa' after years of wandering the earth 
apart following their expulsion from the Garden of ' Adn. 

Jam*: al-Muzdalifa, a well-known place between 'Arafa and Mina, 
known as al-Jam ' either because people gather there or because it is 
there that Adam rejoined Hawwa'. Yawm Jam' refers to the day of 
'Arafat, while Yawm al-Jam' designates the Day of Resurrection 
when people will be gathered together. The Ayyam Jam 1 (days of 
Jam') refer to the days of tashriq at Mina. 

jamra: lit. a small walled place, but in this usage a stone-built pillar. 
There are three jamras at Mina. One of the rites of hajj is to stone 



Jamrat al-*Aqaba: the largest of the three jamras at Mina. It is situated 

at the entrance of Mina from the direction of Makka. 
jimar: plural oijamra, 
Ji*rana: a place near Makka, where the Messenger of Allah distributed 

the booty from the Battle of Hunayn and from where he went into 

ihram to perform 'umra. 
al-Juhfa: the mlqat of the people of Syria and Europe. 
Ka'ba: the cube-shaped building at the centre of the Haram in Makka, 

originally built by the Prophet Ibrahim. Also known as the House of 

Allah. It is towards the Ka'ba that Muslims face when praying. 
Khayf : mosque in Mina located at the east end of the valley. 
Labbayk: "At your service", the talbfya or chant of the pilgrim. 
al-Manasi: a vast plateau on the outskirts of Madina. 
manasik: the rites, i.e. ihram, tawaf of the Ka'ba and sa f y of Safa and 

Marwa, the stay at 'Arafa, Muzdalifa and Mina, the stoning of the 

jamras, the slaughtering of a hady (animal) and the Tawaf al-Ifada, 

manasik al-hajj: the rites of pilgrimage. 
Maqam Ibrahim: the place of the stone on which the Prophet Ibrahim 

stood while he and Isma'il were building the Ka'ba, which marks 

the place of the two rak'at prayer following tawaf of the Ka'ba. 
Marwa: a small hill near the Ka'ba. (See Safa and Marwa). 
mas'a: walking between Safa and Marwa when performing sa f y during 

mash'ar: a place where certain rites are performed. 
Mash'ar al-Haram: a venerated place in the valley of Muzdalifa where 

it is a sunna to stop. 
Masjid al-Haram: the great mosque in Makka. The Ka'ba is situated in 

Masjid an-Nabawi: the Prophet's mosque in Madina. The Prophet's 

tomb is situated in it. 
Masjid al-Qiblatayn: "the Mosque of the two Qiblas", the mosque in 

Madina in which the qibla was changed from towards Jerusalem 

towards the Ka'ba in mid-prayer in 2 AH. 


Masjid at-Taqwa 

Masjid at-Taqwa: "the Mosque of Taqwa", the first mosque to be built. 

by the Prophet and his Companions at Quba'. 
mawaqit: plural of miqat. 
mawqif (plural mawaqif): lit. a standing or stopping place. There are 

two places where pilgrims must stop on the hajj: 'Arafa and 

Mi j anna: a place at Makka. 
Mina: a valley five miles on the road to 'Arafa where the three jamras 

stand. It is part of hajj to spend three or possibly four nights in Mina 

during the days of tashrfq, 
mlqat (plural mawaqit)*. one of the designated places for entering into 

ihram for 'umra or hajj. 
Mizab ar-Rahma: "the Spout of Mercy," the rainspout at the top of the 

Ka'ba on its northeast side, 
Muhassab: a valley outside Makka sometimes called Khayf Ban! 

Muhassar: (Wadi Nar), a depression on the way to Mina where the 

Army of the Elephant of Abraha was turned away. One should has- 
ten through it. 
muhrim: a person in ihram* 

muhsar: someone detained from hajj by an enemy or an illness. 
al-Multazam: the area between the Black Stone and the door of the 

Ka'ba, where it is recommended to make supplication. 
mutawwif: a pilgrim's guide, traditionally a resident of Makka. 
Muzdalifa: a place between 'Arafa and Mina where the pilgrims return- 
ing from 'Arafa spend a night in the open between the ninth and 

tenth day of DhiTl-Hijja after performing Maghrib and 'Iska ' there. 
Nafr (day of): the 12th or 13th of Dhu'l-Hijja when the pilgrims leave 

Mina after having completed all the ceremonies of hajj at 'Arafa, 

Muzdalifa and Mina. 
Nahr (day of): the 10th of Dhu'l-Hijja on which the pilgrims slaughter 

their sacrifices. 
Namira: the site of a large mosque just before 'Arafa where the hajjis 

stop on their way to 'Arafa. 
qarin: a person who performs hajj al-qiran. 



Qarn: the miqat of the people of Najd between Ta'if and Makka. 
qilada (plural qald'id): a garland around the neck of an animal brought 

for sacrifice during the hajj. 
qlran: combining hajj and 'umra simultaneously. 
rami: throwing pebbles at ihejamras at Mina. 
rami: "hastening" in the tawaf, a way of walking briskly accompanied 

by movements of the arms and legs to show one's physical strength. 

This is to be observed in the first three rounds of tawaf, and is to be 

done by the men only and not by the women. 
Safa and Marwa: two hills close to the Ka'ba. It is part of the rites of 

'umra and hajj to go seven times between the two hills. 
sa'y: the main rite of 'umra and part of hajj. It is going between the hills 

of Safa and Marwa seven times. 
talbiya: saying "Labbayk" ("At Your service") during the hajj. 
tamattu': a form of hajj in which 'umra is done first, and then the hajji 

comes out of ihram before going back into ihram for the hajj itself. 
Tan'im: a place towards the north of Makka outside the sanctuary from 

where Makkans may assume the state of ihram to perform 'umra 

and hajj. 
taqlid: garlanding sacrificial animals for the hajj, (Cf. qilada). 
tarwlya: "drawing water", the 8th of Dhu'l-Hijja, the day before 'Arafa 

when the pilgrims gather water and stay overnight at Mina. 
tashriq: "drying meat in the sun", the days of the 10th, 11th, 12th and 

13th of Dhu'l-Hijja when the pilgrims sacrifice their animals and 

stone thcjamras at Mina. 
tawaf: circumambulation of the Ka*ba, done in sets. of seven circuits. 
Tawaf al-Ifada: the tawaf of the Ka'ba that the pilgrims must perform 

after coming from Mina to Makka on the 10th of Dhu'l-Hijja. It is 

one of the essential rites of hajj. 
Tawaf al-Qudum: tawaf of arrival in Makka (fard among the Malikls). 
Tawaf al-Wada': the farewell tawaf done just before the pilgrim leaves 

Tawaf az-Ziyara: "the tawaf of the visit", another name for the Tawaf 

wuquf: stopping at 'Arafa and Muzdalifa. (Cf. mawqif). 



Yalamlama: the mTqdt of the people of Yemen. 

Yemeni corner: the corner of the Ka'ba facing south towards the 

za'ir: visitor, someone visiting the tomb of the Prophet. 
Zamzam: the well in the Haram of Makka. 
ziyara: visit to a tomb or holy places. 



Some Important Fuqaha 

The Malik! Madhhab 

Malik ibn Anas: Abu 'Abdullah al-Asbahi al-Himyari, born in Madina 
in 93/712, the famous Imam of Madina wfiqh and hadith. One of 
the four Imams. His love of the Prophet was such that he would not 
mount a horse in Madina. He always walked barefoot in its streets 
out of his respect for the Prophet. When he was asked something 
that he did not know, he would simply say, "I do not know." He 
would not relate a hadith without first doing wudu\ Asb-Shafi'I was 
one of his pupils. He had great knowledge and piety. He wrote the 
first collection of hadith aadfiqh, al-Muwatta\ He died in Madina 
in 179/795. 

Some Major Maliki fuqaha'\ 

Ibn 'Abdi'l-Barr: an-Numayri, Abu 'Umar, hafiz of the Maghrib and 
Shaykh al-Islam. He was born in Cordova in 368/978 and died at the 
age of 95 in Shatiba in 463/1071. A major hadith scholar, Maliki 
scholar, author, and mujtahid, he was nicknamed "the Hadith 
Scholar of the West". Ibn Hazm said, "There is no one with more 
knowledge of the fiqh of hadith than him." He wrote a number of 
works, the most famous of which is al-Isti'ab, He travelled through- 
out Andalusia and acted as qadi several times. He wrote the earliest 
major commentary on the Muwatta* entitled al-Istidhkar. 

Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawanl: Abu Muhammad 'Abdullah, Maliki 
faqth, 310/922 - 386/996. He was known as "Shaykh al-FaqllT and 
"little Malik" and was the head of the Maliki school in Qayrawan. 



He wrote several books, including his Risdla, Mukhtasar al- 
Mudawwana, an abridgement of the Mudawwana, and an-Nawadir. 

Ibn al-'Arabi: Qadi Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn 'Abdullah al-Ishbili al- 
Ma'afiri (d. 543/1148), author of Ahkam al-Qur'an. He was born in 
Seville and went to North Africa after the fall of the 'Abbadid 
dynasty and travelled to the east. He then returned to Seville which 
was under the Murabitun and became Qadi and taught fiqh. He also 
witnessed the fall of the Murabitun and rise of the Muwahhidun. He 
died near Fes while returning from Marrakesh after a visit to the 
Muwahhid ruler. He wrote over thirty books, including 'Awasim min 
al-Qawasim about the first civil war between Muslims. 

Ibn Habib: 'Abd al-Malik as-Sulami, a Maliki jurist of Cordoba who 
studied under Ibn al-Majishun. He was the author of al- Wadiha, one 
of the major Maliki texts which was used in Andalusia. It was one of 
the most comprehensive books of Maliki ^/i. Although it no longer 
exists, much of it is quoted in an-Nawadir of Ibn Abi Zayd al- 
Qayrawanl. He travelled throughout the world in search of knowl- 
edge and verifying what he had. He died in 238/852. He wrote sev- 
eral books, Al-'Utbi was his pupil and hence most of his work 
comes through him. 

Ibn Juzayy: Muhammad ibn Ahmad, Abu'l-Qasim ibn Juzayy al-Kalbi 
of Granada, born in 693/1294, a Maliki scholar and Imam in tafsir 
and fiqh. He wrote al-Qawa'id al-FiqhTya. He died in 741/1340, 

Ibn al-Mawwaz: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Ibrahim al-Iskandari, 
pupil of Ibn al-Majishun and Ibn 'Abdul-Hakam and early systema- 
tiser of Maliki fiqh. He also studied under Asbagh and Ashhab. He 
died in Syria as a refugee in 281/894 where he had fled from the 
Inquisition about the createdness of the Qur'an (see Mihna). He 
wrote a famous book known as al-Mawwaziya. 

Ibn al-Qasim: Abu 'Abdullah 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn al-Qasim al-'Ataki 
(or al-'Utaqi) who had both knowledge and asceticism. He was one 
of the companions of Malik who had tremendous influence in 
recording his school, since he was the source for Sahnun for the 
problems of Malik. In the Maliki school, he has the same position as 
Muhammad ibn al-Hasan ash-Shaybam in the school of Abu Hanifa. 
Both of them transmitted the school and made free use of ijtihad. 
Ibn al-Qasim had opinions which differed from those of his shaykh, 



Malik, so that some said that he was dominated by opinion. Ibn 
*Abdu T l-Barr said of him, "He was afaqih dominated by opinion. 
He was a righteous and steadfast man." He met Malik after Ibn 
Wahb and kept his company for a long time - about twenty years. 
He can be considered as the main transmitter of MalikI fiqh as the 
Mudawwana, of which he is the source, is the largest compendium 
of Malikifiqh. He would not accept stipends from the ruler and said, 
"There is no good in proximity to rulers." He had sat with them at 
first, but then he abandoned them. He used to consider having a 
large number of close companions to be a form of slavery since that 
puts a qadi in danger of committing injustice and the scholar of 
wasting his time. He died in 191/806 at the age of 63. 

Ibn Rushd: Averroes. Ibn Rushd was a genius with encyclopaedic 
knowledge. He spent a great part of his fruitful life as a judge and as 
a physician, yet he was known in the West for being the great com- 
mentator on the philosophy of Aristotle. He was born in Cordova, 
Spain in 520/1128 and died in 595/1198. His book on jurisprudence 
Bidayat al-Mujtahid wa-Nihayat aUMuqtasid has been held by some 
as possibly the best book on the MalikI school of fiqh. His grandfa- 
ther, Abu'l-Walld was also known as Ibn Rushd and was a MalikI 
faqih who wrote al-Muqaddimat. 

Ibn Wahb: Abu Muhammad 'Abdullah ibn Wahb al-Fihri al-Misn, born 
in 123/740, a hadith scholar. He stayed with Malik for about twenty 
years, and also studied with many of the companions of az-Zuhri. 
He also related from more than four hundred shaykhs of hadith in 
Egypt, the Hijaz and Iraq. Ibn Wahb noticed that some of his hadiths 
were weak. He said, "If it had not been that Allah rescued me 
through Malik and al-Layth, I would have been lost." He was asked, 
"How is that?" He replied, "I had a lot of hadith and it confused me. 
I used to present them to Malik and al-Layth and they would say, 
'Take this and leave that.*" Malik esteemed and loved him. He used 
to call him "th&faqlh" when he wrote to him. He had many excel- 
lent books, including what he heard from Malik which was recorded 
in about thirty books. He wrote down the Muwatta', He recorded his ' 
answers to questions and consulted them. He was asked to accept 
the post of qadi but refused and withdrew, dying in 197/812 at the 
age of 72 



'Iyad, Qadi: lyad ibn Musa, Abu'1-Fadl al-Yahsubi, born in Ceuta in 
476/1083. The Imam of the western Muslim lands in hadith and 
Arabic, a gifted MaMi faqih and scholar who wrote a number of 
books, especially ash-Skifa' and the Tarfib al-Madarik which con- 
sists of biographies of MalMfuqaha'. He was a qadi in Cordoba, 
then Granada and then Marrakesh and died of poison in 544/1149. 

Khalil: ibn Ishaq al-Jundi, a Maliki mufti of Cairo and teacher at the 
Shaykhuniyya, the largest madrasa in Cairo at the time. He died in 
669/1365 or 676/1374. He wrote the very popular Maliki compendi- 
um, al-Muhhtasar. 

al-Qarafl: Shihab ad-din Abu'l- 'Abbas Ahmad b. Abl'l-'Ala* Idris, an 
Egyptian MaliM, but a Berber by origin from Sanhaja, born in 626 
/1228. A M^M faqih and mufti he grew up in al-Qarafa in Cairo. 
He was the most important Maliki scholar of his time in Cairo. He 
had knowledge of Hebrew, grammar, lexicography, algebra, magic, 
astronomy, and opthalmology. He wrote Shark Tanqlh al-Fusul on 
legal theory, al-Furuq on qawa'id, and a six volume opus of Maliki 
fiqk, adh-Dkakhlra, meant to be one of the best books on Maliki 
fiqh, At-Tamyiz was another book by him. He died in 684/1285, 

Sahnun: Abu Sa'id 'Abdu's-Salam ibn Sa'Id at-Tanukhi, the Maliki 
faqih and qadi of North Africa. He met Malik but did not take any- 
thing from him. He wrote the sixteen volume Mudawanna on Maliki 
fiqh. He was born in 160/776-7 in Qayrawan, travelled and studied, 
especially in Tunis and Egypt. He became Qadi in 234/848 under 
the Aghlabid governor, Muhammad ibn al-Aghlab, and had hun- 
dreds of students. He died in 240/854. 

ash-Shatibi: Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Musa al-Gharnatl, (d. 790/1388), a 
Maliki faqih who wrote al-I'tisam and al-Muwafaqat. He presented 
the doctrines of Maqasid ash-Sharl'a (the purposes of the law). , 

al-'Utbl: Muhammad ibn Ahmad, scholar of Cordova and pupil of Ibn 
Habib, who wrote al-'Utbiyya. He was one of the first to popularise 
Malik's school in Andalusia. He diei! in 255/869. His compendium 
was also called al-Mustakhmja. 

*Uthman ibn Fudi: or Usuman dan Fodio or Fodiye, born in Maratta, 
Northern Nigeria in 1168/1754. He was an Islamic scholar and 
Qadiri Shaykh. He led the Fulani jihad in northern Nigeria with his 
younger brother ( Abdullahi and son Muhammad Bello. He was a 



hafii of Qur'an, Maliki faqih, poet, and scholar. He was worried 
about the trend to syncretism and so made hljra from the lands of 
the Gobir to the north and west. He fought for four years against the 
Gobir and Habe peoples and died in Sifawa in 1230/1817. His 
famous book, Ihya' as-Sunna, deals with the daily practices of 
Islam. He wrote numerous books, including the Kitab 'Usui ad-DTn 
and al-Masa'il al-Muhimma. 
al-Wansharlsi: Ahmad ibn Yahya, a Maliki mufti of Fez, (c. 834/1430 - 
914/1508). He has a twelve volume collection of fatwas called al- 
MVyar al-Mughriban Fatawa 'Ulama" Ifriqiya wa'l-Andalus wa'l- 
Maghrib, "The Standard, expressing the fatwas of the scholars of 
Tunisia, Andalusia, and Morocco'*, and other works. 

Some Important Maliki Texts 

Bidayat al-Mujtahid: "The Beginning of the Mujtahid" by Ibn Rushd, a 
systematic account of the principles of derivation of judgements in 
fiqh. His scope extends to the other schools of 'fiqh. Some consider it 
to be the best book written in the Maliki school. 

al-Mawwaziya: one of the major sources of the Maliki school which 
was written by Ibn al-Mawwaz. It is extremely detailed and compre- 
hensive in its discussion of all the sources. 

al- Mi'yar: al-Mi'yar al-Mughriban Fatawa 'Ulama' Ifriqiya wa'l- 
Andalus wa'l-Maghrib, "The Standard, expressing the fatwas of the 
scholars of Tunisia, Andalusia, and Morocco" by al-Wansharisi. A 
comprehensive collection of fatwas. One of the areas it covers is 
fiqh an-nawdzil 

al-Mudavvwana: the famous Maliki legal compendium of Sahnun. It 
contains the replies of Ibn al-Qasim as well as some of those of Ibn 
Wahb. It is sometimes called al-Mukhtalita (mixed up) because the 
problems are lumped together in the various chapters. 

Mukhtasar al-Akhdan: a small booklet dealing with purity and the 
prayer by al-Akhdari. 

Mukhtasar Khalil: the principal Maliki legal textbook by Khalil which 
is so compressed that it requires commentary of which there are 



al-Mustakhraja: See al-'Utbiya. 

al-Muwatta': Malik's famous compendium of fiqh and hadtth. Virtually 
every hadith in it was accepted by al-Bukhari. Ash-Shafi'i said of it, 
"After the Book of Allah, there is no book on earth sounder than 
that of Malik." There are two surviving recensions: that of Yahya 
ibn Yahya al-Laythl al-Masmudi and that of Muhammad ibn al- 
Hasan ash-Shaybani. 

al-Qawa'id al-Fiqhlya: "Rules of Fiqh" by Ibn Juzayy al-Kalbl (d. 
741/1340), a single volume on legal judgements according to the 
MalM school accompanied by the differences and agreements with 
the other schools. 

Risala: by Ibn Abl Zayd al-Qayrawanl, an immensely popular summary 
of the principal elements of the SharT'a. It is also known as Bakara 
as-Sa% "The Beginning of Happiness", and Zubda al-Madhhab, 
"Cream of the School'*. Ibn Abl Zayd wrote it at the age of seven- 
teen to counter the influence of the Fatimids. It covers everything 
from dogma to table manners. 

al-'Utbiyya: or al-Mushtakhmja. A well-known collection of Malik's 
opinions, written by Muhammad al-'Utbl. Some contemporaries 
said that it contained a number of errors. It contains unusual ques- 
tions and often omits to mention how they were transmitted to him. 

The Hanafi Madhhab 

Abu Hanifa: Abu Hanifa an-Nu'man ibn Thabit, founder of the Hanafi 
school in Baghdad. He is one of the four Imams and is known for 
developing ra'y (judicial opinion). He shunned sleep and was called 
the "Peg" because he used to stand for long periods in night prayers. 
He only slept between Zuhr and 'Ayr, He grew up in Kufa and the 
khalif al-Mansur asked him to accept the post of qadi. He refused 
and al-Mansur imprisoned him and beat him until he died. He would 
never sit in the shade of someone to whom he had loaned money, 
saying, "Every loan that brings benefit is usury." He died in 



Some Major Hanafi fuqaha': 

Abu Yusuf: Ya'qub ibn Ibrahim ibn Habib al-Ansan al-Baghdadi, born 
in Kufa in 113/731. He was the student of Abu Hanifa and the first 
to propagate his school, a hadTth master and brilliant jurist who had 
an extensive knowledge of tafslr. He acted as qadTin Baghdad for 
al-Mahdl, al-Hadi and Harun ar-Rashid, who made the Hanafi 
school the official state code for the 'Abbasids. He was also the first 
to write on the principles (usuI) of Hanafi fiqh, and was a mujtahid. 
He died in Baghdad in 182/798. He wrote Kitdb al-Kharaj on taxa- 
tion and constitutional questions. 

al-Hasan ibn Ziyad al-Lu J lu'I: one of the famous students of Abu 
Hanifa and afaqih of Kufa. He wrote several practical works on law, 
including a handbook for qddls. He became qddt of Kufa in 
194/810. He died in Kufa in 204/820. 

Ibn 'Abidfn: Muhammad Amin ibn 'Umar, born in Damascus in 
1 198/1784. Originally a ShafTi, he changed and became the Hanafi 
imam of his time. His most famous work is the eight volume 
Hashiyya Radd al-Muhtar, which is considered authoritative in the 
Hanafi school. He wrote on various areas of knowledge and died in 

al-Khassaf: Abu Bakr Ahmad b. 'Amr. His Kitab Adab al-Qddt has a 
special place in Hanafi literature. He was a court lawyer in Baghdad 
for the 'Abbasid khalif al-Muhtadi. When al-Muhtadi was murdered 
in 256/869, his house was sacked as well. He died in 261/874. 

al-Marghinanl: 'AH ibn Abl Bakr, author of the Hanafi fiqh book, al- 
Hidaya. He died in 593/1 196. 

Muhammad ibn a I -Has an: See ash-Shaybant 

an-Nasafi: 'Abdullah ibn Ahmad, Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman of Idhaj, a vil- 
lage near Isfahan, one of the great Hanafi Imams of his time, who 
wrote on usul t fiqh and 'aqida. He wrote a three volume tafsir called 
Maddrik at-Tanztl. He died in Idhaj in 710/1310. [There are three 
other well-known scholars also called an-Nasafi.] 

al-Quduri: Abu'l-Husayn Ahmad b. Muhammad. He has a well-known 
compendium or Mukhtasar. He died in 428/1036-7. 



as-Sarakhsi: Muhhammad ibn Ahmad, Abu Bakr, a great Hanaf! Imam, 
mujtahid, qadi and author of the thirty volume encyclopaedic al- 
Mabsut, dictated to his students while he was imprisoned in an 
underground cell in Uzjand near Ferghana for advising a local chief 
about the dm. He wrote a number of books and died in Ferghana in 

ash-Shaybanl: Muhammad ibn Hasan, Abu 'Abdullah, born in Wasit in 
13 1/748. A mujtahid Imam, he was educated by Abu Hanifa, Abu 
Yusuf and Malik. He was raised in Kufa where he met Abu Hanifa, 
joined his school and then moved to Baghdad, where the ( Abbasid 
khalif Harun ar-Rashid made him a qadi. He transmitted al- 
Muwatta" of Malik. He was one of the shaykhs of ash-Shaft *L He 
wrote many books and died in Rayy in 189/804. He has Kitab al-Asl 
or al-Mabstlt, al-Jami' as-Saghir and al-Jami l al-Kabir. 

at-Tahawi: Imam Abu Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Misn at-TahawT al- 
Hanafi. Taha is a village in Egypt, He began as a Shafi'i studying 
with al-Muzanl, who was his uncle. One day al-Muzani remarked to 
him, "By Allah, you have achieved nothing." At-Tahawi became 
angry and went to Ibn Abl 'Irnran al-Hanafl and became a Hanafl, 
so eager to establish that school that he demanded the transmission 
of reports of history according to his school and used what others 
considered to be weak arguments, according to al-Bayhaql. One of 
his most famous works is the "Commentary on the Meanings of 
Traditions". He also has a Mukhtasar of Hanafi fiqh. He was born in 
239/851 and died in 321/932. 

Zufar ibn al-Hudhayl: one of the more prominent pupils of Abu 
Hanifa. He was considered to be the most perceptive in the correct 
use of analogy in legal reasoning. No books are transmitted from 
him. He was qadi in Basra where he died in 158/775 at the age of 

Some Hanafi Texts 

Bada'i' as»Sana'i': by Abu Bakr al-Kashani (d. 587/1191), a systematic 
arrangement oifiqh. 



Fatawa 'Alamglriya: a collection of fatwas made by jurists in the 
Moghul empire during the 12th/18th century under 'Alamglr. It was 
edited by Nizam ad-Din Burhanpuri and twenty-four other scholars. 
The sections dealing with worship are classical in pattern, while 
those dealing with criminal and civil law are more pragmatic. A 
source for Muslim law in India. 

Hashiya Radd al-Muhtar: by Ibn 'Abidin (d. 1252/1836). 

al-Hitfaya: by al-Marghtnani (d. 593/1196) one of the most important 
texts outlining the Hanafi school which formed one of the bases for fiqh in the sub-continent. The Hidaya is a commentary on the 
Biddy a al-Mubtada, a concise work on fiqh by the same author. 
There are many commentaries and summaries written on it. It has 
been translated into Persian and English. 

Kitab al-Kharaj: by Abu Yusuf (d. 182/798), one of the earliest legal 
texts which Abu Yusuf wrote for the ' Abbasid fchalif ar-Rashld. It is 
a treatise on taxation and constitutional questions. He clarifed the 
sources of financial revenue for the state and the areas of taxation in 
great detail, basing himself on the Qur'an, transmission from the 
Prophet, and the fatwas of the Companions. He quotes hadiths and 
deduces their underlying reasons and the action of the Companions. 

al-Mabsut: This is the title of two major sources in the Hanafi school. 
One is by ash-Shaybanl (d. 189/804) and is one of the primary texts 
of the school and is sometimes known as al-Asl. It is the largest of 
ash-ShaybanTs books in which he collected questions on which Abu 
Hanlfa g&vefatwd. Each chapter begins with the traditions they con- 
sidered sound regarding it and then relevant questions and their 
answers. It gives a picture of early Iraqi fiqh, but not the legal rea- 
soning behind it. The second book with this title is by as-SarakhsT 
(d. 483/1090) which is comprehensive and based on an unpublished 
work by al-Marwazi. 


The Shafi'i Madhhab 

ash-Shafi'I: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Idris, the famous scholar 
who was born in Ghazza in 150/767 and grew up in Makka. He had 
learned the Qur'an by heart when he was seven. He knew grammar, 
poetry and language. He memorised the Muwatta' in a single night. 
He gsv&fatwds when he was fifteen. He travelled to Yemen and then 
Baghdad and then settled in Egypt. He was the founder of one of the 
four madhhabs. In fact, he produced two schools: the first, the "old 
school" which was based on the school of Madina, and then the 
"new school" which he produced four years after arriving in Cairo. 
He wrote al-Umm and ar-Risala. He was the first to formulate the 
principles of abrogating and abrogated verses. He died in 204/820. 

Some Major Shafi'i fuqahd': 

Ahmad ibn an-Naqlb al-Misrl: Ahmad ibn Lu'lu' ar-Rumi, Shihab ad- 
dfn. His father was a Christian convert from Antakya, Turkey, who 
was originally captured and enslaved by a Muslim prince who edu- 
cated him and then set him free. Then he served him as a captain 
(naqib) and later became a Sufi in the Baybariyya of Cairo where 
Ahmad was born in 702/1302. Ahmad memorised the seven qird'dt 
and studied Shafi'i fiqh, tafsir, Arabic, and Sufism. He wrote the 
'Umdat as-Sdlik. He died of the plague in Ramadan in 769/1368 at 
the age of 67. 

AI-BaghawI: Abu Muhammad al-Husayn ibn Mas'ud, born in Bagha 
near Herat, a Shafi'i Imam in various fields. His father was a furrier. 
He was known to his contemporaries as "the Reviver of the Din". 
He has a sixteen volume Sharh as-Sunna, dealing with Shafi'i fiqh 
and the basis for it. He has a tafsir entitled Lubab at-Ta'wil. He died 
in Marw in 510/1117. He produced the Masabih as-Sunna which is 
a collection of hadfths. 

al-Bayhaqi: Ahmad ibn al-Husayn, Abu Bakr, born in Khasrajand, a vil- 
lage around Bayhaq near Nishapur. He produced nearly 1,000 vol- 



umes, Al-BayhaqI was one of the great Imams in hadith and Shafi'i 
jurisprudence. He wrote some important books, such as-Sunan al- 
Kubra, as-Sunan as-Sughra, aUMabsut, and al-Asma' wa's-Sifat. 
He died in Nishapur in 458/1066. 

al-Ghazali: Muhammad ibn Muhammad, Abu Hamid at-Tusi, the 
ShafTi Imam and Sufi born in Tabiran, near Tus in 450/1058. He 
studied fiqh with al-Juwaynl. He taught at the Nizamiyya Madrasa 
before he became a Sufi. He is nicknamed "ShafTi the Second". He 
died in Tabiran in 505/1111. He was the author of many books, 
especially Ihya' 'Uliimad-DTn, 

Ibn 'AbduVSalam: Tzz ibn 'Abd as-Salam as-Sulaml, "the Sultan of 
the Scholars", born in Damascus in 577/1181. He was a Shafi'i 
scholar and companion of Imam Abu'l-Hasan ash-Shadhili. His rep- 
utation was the stuff of legends. In Damascus as the khatib, he 
refused to wear black, speak in saj* or praise the princes. When as- 
Salih Isma'il made concessions to the Crusaders, Ibn 'Abdu's-Salam 
condemned him from the minbar. He refused to compromise in any 
way whatsoever. He later resigned and retired to write a number of 
books on Shafi'i fiqh, tafsir, and other legal areas. His masterpiece 
was Qawa'id al-Ahkamfi Masalih al-Anam. He died in 660/1262. 

Ibn Hajar al-Haytami: Ahmad ibn Muhammad, born in 909/1504 in 
Abu Haytam, western Egypt, was the Shafi'i Imam of his time. He 
received permission to giv&fatwas when he was barely 20. He died 
in Makka in 974/1567. He wrote many definitive works on Shafi'i 
fiqh, esp. Tuhfat al-Muhtaj, a commentary on an-Nawawi's Minhaj 
at-Talibm, al-Fatawa al-Kubra, and az-Zawajir. 

Ibn as-Salah: Abu ( Amr 'Uthman ibn 'Abdu'r-Rahman ash-Shahrazun, 
known as Ibn as-Salah. An important Shafi'i scholar, he was a Kurd 
born in Sharkhan in 577/1181. He studied in many cities and 
became a master of hadith. One of his teachers was Ibn Qudama. He 
was appointed the head of the Dar al-Hadith in Damascus. He wrote 
a number of books on various topics, including fiqh. He has a 
famous collection of fatwas called Falawa Ibn as-Salah, He died in 

al-Juwayni: Abu'l-Ma'ali 'Abdul-Malik ibn 'Abdullah, Imam of the 
Two Harams, the Imam of the Arabs and non- Arabs, unique in his 
time, the possessor of virtues and author of excellent books. Nizam 



al-Mulk built a madrasa for him at Nishapur. He wrote an unrivalled 
nineteen volume work, Nihaya al-Matlab, on the Shafi'i school. He 
was the shaykh of al-Ghazali and died in Nishapur in 478/1085. 

al-Mawardi: 'All ibn Muhammad, the Qadi, was born in Basra in 
364/972 and died in Baghdad in 450/1058 when he was 86. His pro- 
ficiency mfiqh, ethics, political science and literature proved useful 
in securing a respectable career for him. After his initial appoint- 
ment as qadi, he was gradually promoted to higher offices, until he 
became the Chief Qadi at Baghdad. The 'Abbasid khalif al-Qa'im 
bi'amri'llah appointed him as his roving ambassador and sent him to 
a number of countries as the head of special missions. He was a 
great jurist, muhaddith, sociologist and an expert in political sci- 
ence. His book, al-Hawi, on the principles of jurisprudence is held 
in high repute. His contribution in political science and sociology 
comprises a number of books, the most famous of which is al- 
Ahkam as-Sultanlya. 

al-Muzam: Abu Ibrahim ibn Isma'Tl, bora in 175/791 in Egypt. Ash- 
Shafi'I said about him, "If he had debated with Shaytan, he would 
have defeated him." A Shafi'i mujtahid, he wrote al-Mukhtasar 
about Shafi'i fiqh. If he missed a fard prayer, he would pray it twen- 
ty-five times alone; and he used to wash the dead without payment 
hoping for a reward. He died in 264/878. 

an-Nawawf: Yahya ibn Sharaf, Abu Zakariyya, bora in the village of 
Nawa on the Horan Plain of southern Syria in 631/1233. He was the 
Imam of the later Shaft 'Ites and wrote many books: Minhaj at- 
Talibin, Kitab al-Adhkar, Riyad as-Salihm and other books He lived 
very simply. After twenty-seven years in Damascus, he returned 
home and died at the age of 44 in 676/1277. 

Rabi' ibn Sulayman al-Muradi: Abu Muhammad, he was a long- 
standing student and the main transmitter of ash-ShafiTs books. He 
was known as "the mu'adhdhin" because he gave the adhan in the 
Fustat mosque until his death. He died in 270/884. 

ar-Rafi'I: 'Abdu'l-Karim ibn Muhammad, Abu'l-Qasim, born in 
Qazwin in 557/1 162. The Imam of his time mfiqh and tafsir^ he rep- 
resents with Imam an-Nawawi the principle reference of the later 
Shafi'I school. His main work is a commentary on al-Ghazali' s, al- 



WajTz, entitled Fath al- 'Aziz. He was a mystic and ascetic. He died in 
Qazwin in 623/1226. 
as-Subkf: Taqi ad-Din 'All ibn *Abdu'l-Kafi, born in Subk, Egypt in 
683/1284, a ShafTi scholar and mujtahid. He wrote more than 150 
books including at-Takmila, an eleven volume supplement to an- 
Nawawi's Shark al-Muhodhdhab, Fatawa as-Subkl in two volumes, 
and al-Ibhajfi Shark al-Minkaj. In 739/1339 he moved to Damascus 
where he was made a qadi. Eventually he fell ill and was replaced 
by his son and returned to Cairo where he died in 756/1355, 

Some Shafi'I Texts 

al-Ahkam as-Sultanlya: "The Laws of Islamic Governance" by Abu'l- 
Hasan al-Mawardi (d. 450/1058). A classical work on the laws of 
Islamic governance in practice. It deals with the principles of politi- 
cal science, with special reference to the functions and duties of the 
khalifs, the chief minister and other ministers, the relationships 
between various elements of the public and the government, and 
measures to strengthen the government, and ensure victory in war. 
He is considered as being the author and supporter of the "Doctrine 
of Necessity" in political science. 

Fath al-'Aziz: "The Victory of the Mighty", by ar-Rafi'I (d. 623/1226), 
a commentary on al-Wajiz by al-Ghazali, which in turn provided the 
basis for the Minhdj at-Talibin of an-NawawL It is a main reference 
of the Shafi'I school. 

Minhaj at-Talibin: by Imam an-NawawI (d. 676/1277), an authoritative 
reference for the ShafTi school. It is intended as a commentary on 
al-Muharrar of ar-Rafi'L He refers back to al-Juwaynl via ar-Rafi'i 
and al-Ghazall There are several commentaries on it. 

al-Mustasfa min *Dm al-Usul: a book by al-Ghazali on the usul al-fiqh. 

Nihaya al-Matlab: by al-Juwaynl (d. 478/1085), a massive fifteen vol- 
ume collection on the Shafi'I school. 

Sharh as-Sunna: by al-Bayhaql (d. 458/1066), a sixteen volume work 
dealing with Shafi'I^^ and the basis for it. 



at-Tanblh: by ash-ShirazI (d. 470/1083), a standard work on Shafi'i 

Tuhfat al-Muhtaj: by Ibn Hajar al-Haytami (d. 974/1567), a commen- 
tary on the Minhaj at-Talibln by an-Nawawi. It is one of the main 
authoritative Shafi'I texts. 

'Umdat as-salik: by Ibn an-Naqlb (d. 769/1368), a summary of the 
Shafi'i school which has been translated into English by Nun Keller 
as ''Reliance of the Traveller". 

al-Umm: by ash-Shaft'! (d. 204/820) a seven volume collection which 
contains ash-ShafiTs final school of fiqh. 

al-Wajiz: by al-Ghazafl (d. 505/1111), a synopsis of the Shafi'i school. 

The Hanbali Madhhab 

Ahmad ibn Hanbal: Abu 'Abdullah ash-Shaybanl, Imam of the Ahl as- 
Sunna, born in Baghdad in 164/780 and grew up there as an orphan. 
He was devoted to the Sunna so that he became its Imam in his time. 
He travelled for sixteen years in pursuit of hadlth and memorised 
100,000 hadlths, 30,000 of which are in his Musnad. He was a hafii 
of Qur'an, memorised al-Muwatta" of Imam Malik, and learned fiqh 
from ash-Shafi'i. He was the founder of the Hanbali madhhab. It is 
said that in his gatherings only the Hereafter was mentioned - noth- 
ing of worldly things. He prayed every night and used to recite the 
entire Qur'an every day. He was imprisoned and tortured for twenty- 
eight months under the 'Abbasid khalif al-Mu'tasim for refusing to 
state that the Qur'an was created. He died in 241/855. 

Some Major Hanbali fuqaha': 

Ibn al-Jawzi: Abu'l Faraj 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Jawzi, born in Baghdad 
in 508/1114, a great Hanbali scholar of his time in history and 



hadlth, famous for his many chronicles of the scholars and saints of 
the times preceding him. Ibn al-JawzTs work TalbTs Iblls is one of 
his best known works. Ibn al-Jawzi opposed all doctrines and prac- 
tices, regardless of their sources, which were innovations in the rule 
of Sharl'a - i.e. not found in the Qur'an and Sunna, wherever found 
in the Islamic community, especially in Ibn al-Jawzi's time. He 
wrote condemning specific innovated practices of many groups, 
including: philosophers (mutakallimiin), theologians, traditionalists 
{'ulama' al-hadith), jurists (fuqaha"), preachers, philologists, poets 
and false Sufis. He wrote nearly three hundred books on tasawwuf 
fiqh, 'ilm al-Qur'an, hadlth, tafslr and biographies of many of the 
great men of tasawwuf. Two of his works considered as pillars in the 
field of tasawwuf are Safwat as-Safa and Minhaj al-Qasidin wa 
Mufld as-Sadiqtn. In addition, full length biographies in praise of 
the early Sufis were penned by Ibn al-Jawzi. He is sometimes con- 
fused with Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyya. He died in Damascus in 

Ibn al-Qayyim: Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr, Abu 'Abdullah al-Jawziyya, 
born in Damascus in 691/1292, a Hanball hadlth scholar who wrote 
Zad al-Ma'ad. He also wrote Vlam al-Muwaqqi'ln on usul al-fiqh. 
He edited the works of his shayktu Ibn Taymiyya. He went to prison 
with him in Damascus and remained with him until Ibn Taymiyya' s 
death in 728/1328. He died in Damascus in 751/1350. 

Ibn Qudama: 'Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Qudama, Abu Muhammad 
al-Jama'iH al-Maqdisi, born in Jama'il, Palestine, in 541/1146, a 
Hanbali scholar and Imam educated in Damascus who wrote the 
nine volume al-Mughni on Hanball fiqh. He died in Damascus in 

Ibn Rajab: Abu'l-Faraj 4 Abdu'r-Rahman b. Ahmad al-Baghdadi al- 
Hanbali, who died in 795/1392-3. The author of adh-Dhayl, al- 
Istikhraj and al-Qawa'id. His Tabaqat al-Hanabila is the most 
extensive collection of biographies of Hanbalis. 

Ibn Taymiyya: Ahmad ibn 'Abdu'l-Hallm, born in Harran in 661/1263, 
the famous Hanball scholar. He was imprisoned for much of his life. 
He was a copious writer - perhaps too copious. He died in 
Damascus in 728/1328. 



al-Khallal: Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Harun Abu Bakr, one of the 
major transitters of Ibn Hanbal's fiqh who died in 311/933-4. In fact, 
he is considered the primary collector of Hanbali Jfyfc. He travelled 
extensively to collect the knowledge of Ahmad ibn Hanbal from 
those who transmitted it from him. After he had assembled his 
knowledge, he taught a circle of students in the al-Mahdl Mosque in 
Baghdad from which the Hanbali school spread. He collected his 
texts in the large collection, al-JamV al-Kabir, which was about 
twenty volumes or more. 

al-Khiraqi: Abu'l-Qasim 'Umar, one of the early Hanbali scholars 
whose compendium of Hanbali fiqh is extant. He left Baghdad for 
Damascus when the Shi 'a gained control there. He died in 334/945- 

Some Hanbali texts: 

al-Ghunya li Talibi Tariq al-Haqq: by 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilam (d. 
561/1166), the famous Sufi and founder of the QadirT tariqa. It con- 
tains a summary of Hanbali fiqh. 

Ham al-Muwaqqi'in: by Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyya (d. 751/1350), a 
major work on usul al-fiqh. 

al-Mughni: "The Enricher" by Ibn Qudama (d. 620/1223), a nine vol- 
ume work which comments on al-Khiraqi's al-Mukhtasar fi'l-Fiqh. 
It is the largest commentary on it. Not content with merely expand- 
ing on the text of the Mukhtasar and explaining the evidence for its 
positions, he follows that with a comprehensive exposition of the 
differing views within the Hanbali school and the differences with 
other schools, even the less well-known schools, and then assesses 
their relative weaknesses and strengths. 

Al-Mukhtasar fi'l-Fiqh: al-Khiraql (d. 334/945-6), one of the most 
important and most famous Hanbali works. Over 300 commentaries 
have been written on it. 



Other Madhhabs 

al-Awza f i: Abu 'Amr 'Abdu'r-Rahman, Imam and founder of the 
madhhab followed by the people of the Maghrib before they 
became Maliki. He lived in Syria until he died as a murabit in the 
port of Beirut. He was the main Syrian authority on SharVa in his 
generation. He placed special emphasis on the "living tradition" of 
the Muslim community as an authoritative source of law. His madh- 
hab spread in North Africa and Spain. His tomb is near Beirut. He 
died in 157/774. 

Jaririya: the school founded by Ibn Jarfr at-Tabari which differed so lit- 
tle from the Shafi'i school that it soon disappeared. 

Zahiriya: a school of fiqh which derived its judgements from the literal 
(zahir) text of the Qur'an and the Sunna and rejected ra'y, qiyas, 
istihsan, taqlid, and other legal principles. It was called the Da'udi 
school after its founder, Da'ud ibn Khalaf. The only time it was con- 
nected to political power was under the Muwahhid ruler, Ya'qub al- 
Mansur (580/1184 - 591/1195). The famous Sufi, Muhyi'd-dln Ibn 
'Arabi was a Zahiri in fiqh. 

Some notable Zahirls: 

Da'ud ibn 'All al-Isbahanl: (or Da'ud ibn Khalaf), the founder of the 
Zahirite madhhab, died in 270/884. 

Ibn Hazm: 'All ibn Ahmad az-Zahiri, born in Cordoba in 384/994. He 
was the main representative of the Zahirite school after he aban- 
doned the Shafi'i school. His contentiousness eventually forced him 
to withdraw to his family estate where he died in 456/1064. 



Imamiya: the Shi'ite position, also known as the Ja'fariyya after Ja'far 
as-Sadiq (80/699 - 148/765). Abu Ja'far Muhammad at-Tusi (d. 
460/1067-8) is a fundamental source for Imamlfiqh. His books 
include al-Mabsut, al-Khilaf, an-Nihaya and al-Muhlt. Another 
source is a manual of fiqh entitled Sham 'V al-Islam by Ja'far ibn al- 
Hasan al-Hilll (d. 676/1277). 


Terms used in Kaldm and Philosophy 

'abd: slave, servant of Allah, the creature utterly dependent on its Lord 
and Creator for its existence and sustenance. 

abjad: literally "alphabet", a system of calculation based on the numeri- 
cal values of the Arabic letters, "Abjad" is the first of a series of 
eight words which comprise all the letters of the alphabet, 

adilla 'aqliya: logical proofs or evidence. 

*adl: justice. 

afaqi: time, from afaq, "horizons". AfaqT time describes time in the cre- 
ated world of human daily life. 

Aftahlya: Rafidite sect, see Futhiyya, 

Ahl al-'adl wa't-tawhid: "the people of justice and unity", the title used 
by the Mu'tazilites for themselves: "justice", because they say that 
human actions are not predetermined by Allah or it would be unjust 
for God to reward or punish people; "unity", because they reject the 
attribution of any physical and human qualities to Allah, saying that 
Allah is not only unique, but also He has no multiplicity within 
Him. They hold the view that all anthropomorphic expressions in the 
Qur'an must be interpreted as metaphors and images, and must not 
be understood literally. 

Ahl al-Ithbat: "affirmationists", those who affirmed the gadar or Divine 
omnipotence; blanket term used by the Mu'tazilites for their oppo- 
nents, from Dirar to al-Ash'arL 

Ahl as-Sunna wa'1-Jama'a: the people of the Sunna and the 
Community: all the people who follow the Sunna of the Prophet and 
who hold together as a community on that basis; the main body of 
the Muslim Community. 

Ajarida: a Kharijite sub-sect, close in belief to the Najdites. They were 
the followers of 'Abdu'I-Karim ibn 'Ajrad, 

ala: instrument, tool. 


'alam al-ajsam 

'alam al-ajsam: the world of physical bodies. 

'alam al-amr: the world of dominion, the non-spatial world of the 
angels and human spirits (also called 'alam al-malakiit). 

'alam al-arwah: the world of spirits, as distinct from 'alam al-mithal - 
the world of analogies, which is formal manifestation as a whole. 

'alam al-khalq: the material spatial world (also called 'alam al-mulk 
wa shahadd). 

'alam: other terms involving 'alam are: 'alam al-lahut, "the world of 
Divinity"; 'alam al-jabarut, "the world of power"; 'alam al- 
malakiit; "the world of Dominion"; 'alam an-nasut, "the world of 
humanity"; and 'alam al-hahut, "the Divine Ipseity". 

'alim (plural 'ulama*)x a man of knowledge, a scholar, especially in the 
sciences of Islam. 

ally a: instrumentality. 

al- f Ama': the Great Mist: primordial non-spatiality in non-time. 

amr: the command (see Sufism), the eidos of Aristotle, the active pole 
(Yang) in which the Yin is tab? a (nature, or the hyle of Aristole). 

amthila: examples, plural of mithdl. 

aniyya: I-ness. 

'aqa'id: (plural of 'aqida) faith, beliefs, 

'aqida: creed, belief or tenet of faith firmly based on how things are, 
distinct from the testimony of faith (shahada). 

'aqil: intelligent, sane. 

*aql: intellect, the faculty of reason. 

al-'Aql: the intellect, al-'Aql aUAwwal: the first Intellect, analogous to 
the Pen (al-Qalam). 

al-'aql al-fa'il: Active Intellect, the nous of Plotinus, the logos, or 
"world of ideas" of Plato, a term used by al-FarabL 

'aql gharizi: inborn intelligence. 

al-'aql al-hayolam: potential intellect, intellectus potenta, latent capaci- 
ty to acquire external truths, a term used by al-FarabL 

al-'aql al-mustafad: acquired intellect, intellectus acquisitus, learned 
knowledge, a term used by al-Farabi. 

'arad (plural a'rad): an accidental or non-essential, ontic quality. The 



opposite ofjawhar. This applies to qualities like colour, heat, cold, 
motion, rest, etc. 

asas: "first principle", an Isma'ili term. 

asbab: causes, plural of sabab, 

al-asbab wa'l-wasa'it: literally causes and means, intermediary causes. 

Ash'arites: along with the Maturidites, articulated the Sunni position of 
kalam, which is characteristed by rationality while refusing to force 
it upon matters of faith. The main features of this school are the 
negation of intermediate cause and effect as everything is caused by 
Allah and the discontinuity between Allah and His creation. 
Furthermore, it is asserted, the Divine Attributes are distinct from 
the Essence, although they cannot be in any way comparable to the 
attributes of creatures. The Word of Allah, for example, is eternal 
and uncreated while articulated sounds are created. 

al-aslah: "the best", the Mu'tazilite doctrine that Allah always chooses 
the best for his creatures. 

asma' adh-dhat: the Names of the Essence. 

asma' as-sifat: the Names of the Attributes. 

atomism: an Ash'arite position refined by al-Baqillam which asserts 
that atoms are simultaneously both space and time. They are instants 
in space, but without extension. 

al-'ayan ath-thabita: archetypes, fixed essences, source forms. 

aysa: term used by al-Kindl for being. Now superseded by kawn. 

Azariqa: the Azraqites, the most extreme Kharijite group in Basra who 
followed Nafi' ibn al-Azraq (d, 65/686), whose position is that any- 
one who commits a sin or act of disobedience to Allah is an unbe- 
liever and goes to Hell forever. Any Muslim who did not share their 
opinion in detail was considered a mushrik; those who did not emi- 
grate to their camp were considered mushriks; and the wives and 
children of such mushriks were considered mushriks. Since not join- 
ing them was considered a sin they therefore felt justified in fight- 
ing, robbing and killing all non-Azraqite Muslims. They utilised the 
practice of isti'rad to ascertain the personal view of a Muslim. If he 
said, "I am a Muslim," they killed him immediately because there 
could be no Muslim outside their own camp - but they let non- 
Muslims live. 



bada': change of mind in relation to Allah's knowledge. This doctrine 
was held by some extreme Shi'ite groups who would forecast cer- 
tain events, and when what they predicted did not occur would say 
that Allah had "changed His mind*'. 

batin: inwardly hidden. 

batini: inward, esoteric. 

Batimya: this usually refers to the Isma'ilis who interpreted religious 
texts exclusively on the basis of their hidden meanings rather than 
their literal meanings. This type of interpretation gained currency 
about the 8th century among certain esoteric sects, especially the 
Isma'ilis. They believed that beneath every obvious or literal mean- 
ing of a sacred text lay a secret, hidden meaning, which could be 
arrived at through ta'wil; thus, every statement, person, or object 
could be scrutinised in this manner to reveal its true intent. They fur- 
ther stated that Muhammad was only the transmitter of the literal 
word of God, the Qur'an, but it was the imam who was empowered 
to interpret, through ta'wil, its true, hidden meaning. 

Bayt al-Hikma: an academy founded by the 'Abbasid khalif al-Ma'mun. 

bid'a: innovation, changing the original teaching of the Prophet, some- 
thing introduced into Islam after the formative period. 

bid'a haqzqzya: absolute innovation. 

bid'a idafiya; relative innovation. 

bila kayf: "without asking how", to avoid conceptualising or specifying 
or anthropomorphising metaphorical expressions like "Hand of 
Allah" or "descent". 

biirhan: demonstration, demonstrative reasoning, definite proof. 

Butriya; (or Batriya) a Zaydi sect who said that 'All was best, but that 
he had entrusted the imamate to Abu Bakr and 'Umar. 

ad-Dahr: unending and everlasting time, not divided into past, present 
and future. Linear time is called 'zaman' in Arabic. 

dahrl: materialist or atheist. Probably originally referred to a follower of 
Zurvanism which is associated with a form of atheistic materialism 
that asserted the eternity of the material universe. 

daruriyat: immediately evident propositions. 

dawr: arguing in a circle. 

Dhat: Essence. 



Druzes: a heterodox sect which developed out of Fatimid Isma'Hism 
and the 5th/llth century agitation of the Qarmatians. Today there 
are about half a million Druzes living in Syria, Lebanon, and 
Palestine who are not considered to be Muslims either by the 
Shi 'ties or the Sunnls. 

fahm: understanding. 

falsafa: philosophy, which attempts to form a systematic world-view out 
of logical and scientific reasoning. (Compare with kalam). 

fatarat: Kharijite doctrine of eclipse of belief. 

fayd: the emanation of created things from Allah. The word is not used 
in the Qur'an for creation. Muslim philosophers, such as al-Farabl 
and Ibn Slna, under the influence of Neoplatonism conceived of cre- 
ation as a gradual unfolding process. Generally, they proposed that 
the world came into being as the result of God's superabundance. 
The process of creation begins, they asserted, at the most perfect 
level and then "descends" to the least perfect: physical matter. All 
created things yearn for what is more perfect. 

faylasuf : philosopher 

fikr: reflection. 

al-Fiqh al-Akbar: a creed, the most famous is by Abu HanTfa. 

Futhiya: or Aftahiya, from al-Aftah ("flat-footed") the nickname of 
'Abdullah, the eldest son of Ja'far as-Sadiq. They believed that the 
Imam passed on the imamate by testament (and so could go from 
one brother to another). 

Ghaliya: same as Ghulat. 

gharad: motive, individual interest. 

ghariza: instinct. 

Ghayb: the Unseen, unmanifest, that which is hidden from the eyes 
whether or not it is perceived by the heart; or it can be something 
which is beyond any sort of perception, such as the future. 

ghayba: occupation; concealment, 

ghayr mahsus: not perceived by the senses. 

Ghulat: "Extremists", extreme groups of the Shi'a who claimed that 
'AH was divine. Their most dramatic manifestations were found in 
the Qarmatians, the Isma'IHs, the Druzes, and the *AH Ilahis. 

haba': fine dust, the passive universal substance. 



hahut: ipseity. 

hakim (plural hukarna'): sage. 

hanif (plural hunafa")\ one who possesses the true religion innately. 

Harithiya: a sub-sect of the Ibadites, the followers of al-Harith ibn 
Mazy ad al-Ibadl, who held Mu'tazilite views. 

al-Haruriya: A term used to denote the early Kharijites, from the name 
of the village which was their centre. 

Hasbaniya: a group known in the history of philosophy for their doubts, 
scepticism and sophism. 

hawa: passion, desire; also used in the plural (ahwa'\ meaning opinions 
which have moved away from the truth. 

hawadith: originated things, things which exist within the confines of 
time-span and place. 

haykal: bodily form. 

hayula: from Greek hyle, substance in the sense of materia prima. Al- 
haba' has the same meaning. Ibn 'Arab! also calls it al-Kitab al- 
Mastur: the Inscribed Book. 

hidaya: active guidance by Allah. 

hikma: wisdom, 

hiss: the faculty of sensation, the domain of the senses. 

huduth: located in time, the beginning of the universe in time. 

huduth al-ashya': originated, temporal character of things. 

hujja: proof or argument. 

hulul: incarnation. 

Ibadlya: the followers of 'Abdullah ibn Ibad. They are the most bal- 
anced of the Kharijites and the closest to the Muslims in opinon and 
thought. They maintain the distinction between kufr ni'ma and kujr 
shirt They assert that every sin is kufr ni'ma and that grave sinners 
will be in the Fire forever. 

ifham: intelligibility. 

ihtida': the quality of being guided. 

ijad: bestowing of existence; bringing into existence. 

ijbar: determinism. 

ikhtiyar: free choice. 



Ikhwan as-Safa: "the Brethren of Purity", a secret philosophico-reli- 

gious society which arose in Basra in the fourth/tenth century 

among some of the Isma'ills. 
iktisab: the same as kasb, acquisition. 
ilhad: heresy, deviation. 
'ilia (plural 'Hal): underlying reason, effective cause. Ma'na and sabab 

are synonyms. 
'ilm (plural 'ulum)i knowledge; science. 
'ilm al-huruf: "the science of the letters", a method of interpretation by 

referring to the numerical equivalents of letters in a word or phrase. 

For example, the numerical value of the Arabic letters in the phrase 

Jath an mubin 011 " (Qur'an 48:1) adds up to 591, the year of the "clear 

victory" over the Christians by the Muwahhidun at Alarcos, Spain. 

They do not, however, add up to all the other years in which there 

were also clear victories! 
'11m al-jafr: the science of letters. 
'ilm an-nujum: astronomy. 
'ilm at-tanjlm: astrology. 
una': implication, implicit indication. 
Imami: a term referring to one of the Ithna 'asharite Shi'ites. 
iman: belief, faith, assent, acceptance. 
al-Iqtisad: "The Just Mean in Belief, a work by al-Ghazall in which he 

simplified the work done by al-Juwaynl. 
irada: will, volition, aspirancy. For Matundi, there is a difference 

between irada and mashl'a. There is no coercion involved in 

mashl'a, but man's acceptance is involved. Thus mashl'a is involved 

in choosing belief or disbelief. Irada involves coercion. 
irja': suspending or postponing judgement on whether or not someone 

is a believer. 
al-Irshad: a treatise by al-Juwayni on the Sunni position in kalam, 
Ishraqi: illuminist school of philosophy, an eclectic mystical intellectu- 

ism: name, noun, the Divine Name. Sometimes al-hm al-A'zam, the 

Greatest Name. 
'isma: infallibility, preservation of the Prophets from wrong action. 



istidlal: deductive reasoning. 

Isma'ilis: the "Sevener" Shi'a, the followers of Isma'Il, son of Ja'far as- 
Sadiq (d. 148/765). Many of their doctrines were influenced by 
those of the Manichaeans. They assert that Isma'Il completed the 
cycle of seven imams after which the era of the hidden imams 
began, and these imams send out emissaries. They believe that if the 
imam is not manifest (qd'im), then his emissary or proof (hujja) 
must be manifest. 

isti'rad: the practice of the Basran Khawarij, killing all non-Kharijites 
whom they came across. Literally means "questioning" but came to 
designate the indiscriminate killing of theological opponents, (cf. 

istita'a: the power or capacity to act. 

Ithna' 'Ashariya: the Shi'ites who follow twelve Imams. 

i'tiqad: belief, being convinced about the truth of something. 

i'tizal: lit. "withdrawal", the theology of that group which withdrew 
from the circle of Hasan al-Basrl and came to be known as the 

jabr: predetermination of man's actions by Allah. 

jabriya: pre-determinist, the name given to those who, in opposition to 
the Qadariya, deny the freedom of the will, and on this point make 
no distinction between man and inanimate nature, inasmuch as his 
actions are subordinate to the compulsion (Jabr) of God. Thus 
everything has been pre-determined and man has no responsibility 
whatsoever for his actions. The most prominent champion of this 
view was Jahm ibn Safwan, as well as many other small sects. 

Ja*fari: the "Twelver" Shi'a, the followers of Ja'far as-Sadiq (d. 

Jah mites: followers of Jahm ibn Safwan (d. 128/745) who taught that 
Allah has no attributes and that man has no free will of any sort at 

Jarudlya: one of the Zaydi Shi'ite groups who believed that there was a 
shiira of the descendants of Hasan and Husayn after the death of 
Hasan. They insisted that the rightful Imam must not remain hidden. 



jawhar: lit. "jewel", substance, specifically the essence of intrinsic 
being of a form. 

kabira (plural kaba'ir): major wrong actions which are described in the 
Qur'an or hadith along with an explicit penalty or threat. 

kalam: 'theology' and dogmatics. Kalam begins with the revealed tradi- 
tion and uses rationalistic methods in order to understand and 
explain it and to resolve apparent contradictions. The name was 
either derived from the fact that their primary question was the 
"Word of Allah" or in imitation of philosophers who called "logic" 
"kalam". (Compare wiihfalsafa). 

kasb: (or iktisab) acquisition. Among the Ash'arites, the action of a 
creature is said to be created and originated by Allah and 'acquired 1 
by the creature, meaning it is brought into connection with his 
power and will without there resulting any effect from him in bring- 
ing it into existence. He is simply a locus for it. It also refers to 
knowledge which is obtained by the voluntary application of sec- 
ondary causes. 

kawn: Being, all phenomena, 

kayfiya: modality, quality. 

Kaysanlya: Shi'ite group, who maintained that after the death of 
Husayn, the Imam was another son of *AK, Muhammad ibn al- 
Hanafiyya(d. 81/700). 

khalq al-Qur'an: "the createdness of the Qur'an", a Mu'tazilite doc- 
trine. The Mu'tazilites denied that the attributes of Allah are eternal. 
Since the Qur'an is speech, they argued, and since speech is an 
attribute, they therefore denied the eternal existence of the Qur'an. 
This was the source of the controversy which resulted in the Mihna, 
or Inquisition, 

Kharijites: or Khawarij, the earliest sect who separated themselves 
from the body of the Muslims and declared war on all those who 
disagreed with them, stating that a wrong action turns a Muslim into 
an unbeliever. 

khasla (plural khisal): a property, quality, element; also a branch or part 
of something (e.g. the branches of faith). 

khatra (plural khatayd): sin, error, includes both dhanb and ithm. 



khatima: "the seal", the final act of a person which determines whether 
he is a believer or an unbeliever. 

Khawarij: See Kharijites. 

al-Kibrlt al-Ahmar: "Red Sulphur", the Philosopher's Stone. 

kufr ni'ma: ingratitude for a blessing, used by certain Kharijites to indi- 
cate commission of a minor sin. (See Ibadfya). 

kufr shirk: also kdfir din, disbelief in Allah by associating something 
else with Him. (See Ibadlyd). 

al-kulliyat al-khams: the five universals: life, religion, family, sanity 
and property. 

kulliyat al-wujud: universals of being. 

kumun: doctrine that substances have their potentialities present but 
concealed in them (this used to be a Manichaean doctrine). 

la hukm ilia lillah: "There is no judgement except that of Allah", the 
motto of the Kharijites, used to justify whatever judgements they 

Lafziya: view that while the Qur'an is uncreated in its essence, man's 
"lafz" or utterance of it is created. Chiefly represented by al- 
Karabisi (d. 245-48/859-62) and Ibn ath-ThaljL 

lays: al-Kindi's term for "not-being", now superseded by 'adam. 

lutf : Divine grace. 

mabda' (plural mabadV)\ principle, basis, starting point. In the plural it 
means ideology, fundamental concepts. 

madda: matter. 

madras a: a traditional place of study and learning. 

mahall: locus. For example, al-Maturidi says that the heart is the locus 
of faith. 

manly a: quiddity, essential nature. 

majazl: metaphorical, figurative. 

maktub: 'written", pre-ordained, already decided. 

malahida: heretics, apostates. It is the plural of mulhid, 

mantiq: logic (as a discipline). 

al-manzila bayna manzilatayn: "the position between the two posi- 
tions", one of the five principles of the Mu'tazilites. Politically, they 
took a position between the Shi 'a and the Sunnis. In respect of 



belief, they said that someone who is afasiq is neither a believer nor 
an unbeliever. On the surface, this seems innocuous, but it is really 
an offshoot of the earlier Manichaean metaphysical teaching. 

maqala: treatise; doctrinal position. 

Maqalat al-Islamiyyin: the famous work by al-Ash'ari. It surveys and 
assesses the various sects, sets forth the basic creed of the Muslim 
Community, and surveys the different opinions on the themes of 
kalam. It was the first work of its kind. 

maqdi: object of decree. 

ma c qui: rational, intelligible. 

maratib al-wujud: "the chain of being": mineral, plant and animal. 

mashi'a: choice (see irada). 

Mashsha'I: a Peripatetic, an Aristotelian. 

Maturidite: a follower of al-Maturidi (d. 333/944), along with the 
Ash'arites, responsible for the Sunni articulation of kalam. As al- 
Maturidi was from Khorasan, his school was more widespread in the 
east and Central Asia. It is more intuitional and less concerned with 
rational expression than the Ash'arites. (See al-Maturidi.) 

mawjudat: existents. 

Mihna: the Inquisition instituted by the 'Abbasid khalif, al-Ma'mun, 
which required all important people to publicly state that they 
believed that the Qur'an was created, even if they did not 

millat Ibrahim: religion of Ibrahim, thefitra, primordial religion. 

minhaj: lit. "open, plain road", procedure, manner. 

mithal: a model according to which another thing is made or propor- 
tioned, a pattern by which a thing is cut or measured, a precedent, an 
example or parable, a multi-dimensional metaphor capable of con- 
veying more than one meaning simultaneously. 

mithl: like. 

mubiqat: great destructive sins. 

mudarris: teacher. 

Mufawwida: a Qadarite group who believed that they are entrusted to 
themselves by Allah so that they act independently and of their own 
accord thanks to this delegation of power. 



al-Muhakkima: along with "Hariiriya", a name used for the earliest 
Kharijites. They deserted 'All's camp when 'AIT accepted arbitration 
in his war with Mu'awiya. Their objection was that 'All had fol- 
lowed a human hukm (judgement) rather than Divine hukm. They 
thought that this was tantamount to disbelief and hence they 
declared 'All to be a kafir. 

muhaqqiq: verifier, one who establishes the reality for himself; those 
who have understanding of reality. 

muhawara: dialogue, debate. 

muhdath: generated, temporal, contingent, located in time. 

muhdathat: novelties, innovations 

mujaddid: renewer, restorer of the Din; it is said that one comes every 
hundred years or so. 

Mujbira: another name for the Jabiiya. 

mulhid: a heretic, atheist, 

mulhidat: heresies. 

Mulk: the realm of solid forms, the visible realm; also the title of Sum 
67oftheQur J an. 

mumkinat (plural ofmumkin): possibilities. 

Murji'ites: the opponents of the Kharijites. They held that it is faith and 
not actions which are important and so they suspend judgement on a 
person guilty of major sins. They had a number of sub-groups. 

Musabbib al-asbab: the Causer of causes, i.e. Allah. 

Mushabbiha: anthropomorphists. 

mustahilat: (the plural of mustahil), impossible things. 

mutakallim: someone who studies the science of kalam, the science of 
investigating and articulating religious belief. 

Mu'tazilite: someone who adheres to the school of the Mu'tazila which 
is rationalist in its approach to existence. The term means "with- 
drawers" because they "withdrew" to an intermediate position as 
regards the evaluation of grave and lesser sins, holding to the posi- 
tion that someone who commits a wrong action is neither a believer 
nor an unbeliever. They also opposed the view that the Qur'an was 
eternal and uncreated, believing that this would compromise the 
uniqueness of Allah. (See also Ahl al- 'adl wa't-tawhld). 



muwafat: a person' s state of faith at the moment of death. 

an-nafs an-natiqa: the rational soul which can make its ideas known by 
means of speech and which also understands speech. It does not die 
with the body, as it is an essential substance and not an accident. 

Najdiya or Najdat: Najdites, the followers of Najda ibn 'Umaymir al- 
Hanafi (d. 72/693), an extreme Kharijite group in Yamana who 
dropped the label "shirk" in favour of "kufr". If a Muslim persists in 
a sin, they asserted, he is an unbeliever and a mushrik. They intro- 
duced the distinction between kufr nVma and kufr dm (ingratitude 
for blessing and unbelief). 

Najh al-Balagha: a collection of sayings and sermons attributed to 'AH 
compiled by Sayyid Muhammad ar-Radi (d. 406/1016). 

Namus: from nomos (Greek for law), an angel who brought revelation, 
mentioned by Waraqa when Khadija informed him that the Prophet 
had received revelation from Jibril. 

Nasibi: one of the Nawasib. 

Nasut: humanity, corporeality. 

na't: attribute, quality, that which describes something. 

Nawasib: a group of people who go to extremes in their dislike of 'All 
or his family; they are the counterpart of the Raridites. 

nazar: examination, reasoning, intellectual examination, thinking about 
a thing and trying to understand it. 

nazara: debate. 

naztr: philosopher, debater, investigator. 

nazzar: someone who examines and decides questions of theology and 

qada': the execution of the Divine decree. 

qadar: the decree of Allah. 

Qadariya: a sect who said that people have power (qadar) over their 
actions and hence free will. 

qadlm: eternal, ancient. 

qa'im: one who rises after death; used by the Isma'Ilis for the seventh 
imam before the beginning of the new cycle. The Lnamiya say that 
the twelfth imam is the qa'im. 

Qaramita: the Qarmatians. 



Qarmatians: sometimes written Cannathians, a revolutionary Isma'ilite 
movement which began as a secret society involving initiation and 
common property. Their artisans were formed into guilds. Their 
name is taken from their first leader, Hamdan Qannat They were 
particularly successful in the Arabian peninsula where they seized 
Makka in 317/930 and carried off the Black Stone, which they kept 
for twenty years. They believed in the emanation of Divine Light 
through various veils and interpreted the Qur'an allegorically. 

qidam: timeless eternity, eternity which is not affected at all by temporal 

qudra: power, ability, capacity. 

quwwa al-ghadiya: nutritive faculty. 

quwwa al-hassa: sensitive faculty, power of perception. 

quwwa al-mutakhayyila: faculty of imagination. 

quwwa an-nafiqa: rational faculty, reason. 

quwwa an-nuzu'iyya: appetitive faculty. 

Rafidites: the Rawafid, a group of the Shi'a known for rejecting Abu 
Bakr and 'Umar as well as 'Uthman. It is a nickname, meaning 

raj 'a: 'return', the Shi'ite doctrine that the Imam is hidden and will 

ramz (plural rumuz): a symbol. 

Rasa'il: "the Epistles"; fifty-two treatises written by unknown Isma'ili 
writers from the Ikhwan as-Safa in the fourth/tenth century. They 
deal with the sciences and philosophy and a great deal of numerical 
symbolism. Their contents are basically a combination of Neo- 
Pythagoreanism and Neo-Platonism. 

Rawafid: Rafidites. 

risala: message, also a treatise. 

sabab: cause, means of obtaining something. 

Sabab al-Awwal: the First Cause, i.e. Allah. 

sababiya: causality. 

Sab'Iya: the "Sevener" Shi'a or Isma'Ilis. 

saghira (plural sagha'ir): minor wrong action. 



salb: negation, to declare Allah free of any attributes which appertain to 
created beings. 

Shablbya: Kharijites who denied that Allah's foreknowledge had a 
determining effect and explained human responsibility in terms of a 
concept of delegation (tafwid). (Cf. Mufawwida). 

shakk: doubt. 

sifa: attribute, 

Sufrites: a moderate branch of the Kharijites. 

taba"ud: the concept of divisibility. In relation to belief, it regards 
belief as a combination of several qualities. 

tabi'a: nature. 

tafadul: difference in degrees, thus giving preference to one over anoth- 

tafra: "the leap", the view originated from the Mu'tazilite an-Nazzam 
that a body could move from point A to point B without passing by 
the intermediary point b, 

tajriba: empirical experience. 

takfir: to declare that someone is a kafir. A practice introduced by the 

takhmln: speculation, conjecture. 

takwln: bringing into being; causing something to become manifest in 
existence through the Divine command, "Be!" 

tanasukh: metempsychosis. 

tanzih: transcendence, disconnecting Allah from creation. The opposite 
of tashbih, 

taqlya: concealment of one's views to escape persecution. It was obliga- 
tory for the secret agents of some of the more extreme Isma'ili 

tashbih: anthropomorphism, comparing or connecting Allah to created 
things or making Allah resemble created things. Opposite of tanzih. 

ta'til: negation, the concept of denying Allah all attributes, 

tawallud: the generation of actions, the causal relationship between the 
action of the doer and the deed, posited by the Mu'tazilites. 

tawaqquf: conditionality; also the Shi'ite position of stopping at a par- 
ticular imam and believing in his concealment and return. 



ta'wfl: allegorical interpretation. 

la wild: "generation", "natural production", for the Mu'tazilites, the pro- 
cess b.y which correct reasoning produces knowledge. For the 
philosophers, it is by logical necessity (tjab). For the Maturidites, 
knowledge after correct reasoning is due to the custom established 
by Allah. 

thanawiya: dualism. 

thubut: latency (in respect of existence). 

uhihiya: divinity, Divine nature. 

'uqud arba'a: the four principles of al-Maturldi which denote the four 
degrees of knowledge: tawhid, ma'rifa, Tman and Islam. 

al-usul al-khamsa: the five affirmations of the Mu'tazilites: tawhid; 
'adl (justice); al-wa'd wa'l-wa'id ("the promise and the threat"); 
manzila bayna'l-manzilatayn (the position between two positions); 
and commanding the correct and forbidding the rejected. 

wa*d: promise, particularly the promise of the Garden. 

al-wa'd wa'l-wa'id: "the promise and the threat", the promise of 
Heaven and the threat of Hell as recompense for actions. A conse- 
quence of this, the Mu'tazilites assert, is that a wrongdoer can never 
come out of the Fire by Divine Mercy. 

wahdanlya: Divine Oneness. 

wa'Id: threat, particularly the threat of the Fire. 

al-Wa'Idiya: Mu'tazilites who believe that logically Allah must punish 
the disobedient as He must reward the obedient; therefore, according 
to them, if a person committed a major sin and died before repent- 
ing, then Allah must not forgive him. This doctrine conflicts with 
the Qur'an and the Sunna. 

Waqifiya: Rafidites who maintained that Musa al-Kazim, a son of Ja'far 
as-Sadiq, the sixth Shi'ite Imam, would return and put everything to 
rights, since they believed that the seventh Imam would complete 
one cycle and begin a new one; also a sect of Kharijites who sus- 
pended judgement. (Cf. MurjVites). 

wasa'it: secondary causes. 

wujud: existence or being. Wajib al-wujild, "He Whose existence is 
necessary 1 * applies to Allah, whereas creation is mumkin al-wujud, 
"that whose existence is possible". 



al-wujud al-mutlaq: "Absolute Being" which is impossible to conceive. 
It did not come out of non-existence, but exists absolutely. 

wuquf: suspension of judgement, 

zaman: linear time. 

zandaqa: heresy. This is an Arabicised Persian word. The term had been 
used for heterodox groups, especially Manichaeans, in pre-Islamic 
Persia, and hence it was originally applied to Magians. 

zann: opinion, supposition, conjecture, speculation, 

Zaydites: the "Fiver" ShTa. They followed Zayd ibn 'All, the grandson 
of al-Husayn. They say that any of the Ahl al-Bayt can be the Imam. 
They are Mu'tazilite in doctrine and rather puritanical, Sufism is 
forbidden by them. 

zindiq: a term used to describe a heretic whose teaching is a danger to 
the community or state. Originally under the Sasanids it was a free 
thinker, atheist or dualist. It was particularly applied to those influ- 
enced by the doctrines of Manichaeanism, a dualistic syncretism of 
pagan, gnostic, Magian, Judaeo-Christian and Indian traditions 
which experienced a revival in Iraq near the end of the Umayyad 


Some Major Figures in Kalam and 
early Muslim Philosophy 

'Abdu'l-Qahir ibn Tahir al-Baghdadl: Abu Mansur, a Shaft*! scholar 
and Ash*arT theologian, specialising in usul and heresies. He was 
born in Baghdad and taken to Nishapur by his father when young 
and was educated by Sufi scholars. He lectured to his students on 
seventeen subjects. He wrote on many subjects including mathemat- 
ics, Sufism and kalam. He is known for his book on heresiography, 
al-Farq bayna al-Firaq, on the sects in Islam. His main work on 
kalam was Kitab Usui ad-Dln t a summary of the major aspects of 
Islam. He has a famous book on naskh called an-Nasikh wa'l- 
Mansukh. He died in Isfara'in in 429/1037. 

Abu'l-Hudhayl: Muhammad ibn al-Hudhayl al-'Allaf al-'Abdi, born 
between 132/748 and 137/753 at Basra and died between 226/840 
and 235/850, a client of 'Abd al-Qays. He was a famous Mu'tazilite 
known for his skill in argument whom some consider the founder of 
kalam. He argued well against the Magians and it is said that thou- 
sands of them became Muslim through him. He took his views from 
'Uthman ibn Khalid at-Tawil who had learned them from al-WasiL 
He denied predestination and the existiential attributes. He held that 
there was a generation (tawallud) or causal relationship between 
doer and deed. He also appears to have been the founder of the 
"atomic" school, (See atomism). 

al-Ash'ari: Abu'l-Hasan 'All ibn Isma'Il. He was born in Basra in 
260/873-4, and was a descendant of Abu Musa al-Ash'ari. He was 
for a time a Mu'tazilite, a follower of al-Jubba'i, but later left them. 
He became an unrivalled great scholar, the Imam of the People of 
the Sunna and author of famous books. He wrote about 300 books. 
In his Maqalat al-Islamiym, the first book of its kind, he goes into 
detail about the different sects. He and al-Maturidl are the founders 
of Sunnl kalam. He died in 324 /936. 

Averroes: see Ibn Rushd. 



Avicenna: see Ibn Sina. 

al-Baqillani: Muhammad ibn at-Tayyib, the Qadi and Imam of the peo- 
ple of the Sunna, d. 403/KH3. He was bom in Basra in 338/950 and 
became one of the foremost scholars in kalam. He was a Maliki 
faqlh and Ash'arite mutakallim. He wrote I'jaz al-Qur'an. He was 
sent by 'Adud ad-Dawla as an envoy to the Byzantines in 
Constantinople where he debated with Christian scholars in the pres- 
ence of the emperor. In his Tamhid he presents the position of the 
Ash'arites and played a pioneering role in elaborating its 
metaphysics. Ibn Khaldun credits him with introducing atomism, 
but it would be more accurate to say that he reworked it. At-Tamhld 
is the first systematic statement of Ash'arite doctrine. 

Bishr ibn Ghiyath al-Marisi: He was prominent in publicising the idea 
that the Qur'an was created. He was connected most of his life with 
Kufa and was born not later than 144/760, the son of a Jewish gold- 
smith. He studied fiqh and hadith with Abu Yusuf and hadlth with 
Sufyan ibn 'Uyayna. He became outstanding in kalam and Harnmad 
ibn Zayd called him a kafir. He moved to Baghdad where he had his 
own group and was executed probably in 218/833 (or 834 or 842). 

Dirar ibn *Amr: possible forerunner of the Mu'tazila, lived in the time 
of Harun ar-Rashid in Basra and was a contemporary of Wasil ibn 
( Ata\ He rejected atomism and said that the body was an aggregate 
of accidents which then becomes the bearer of other accidents. He 
also denied the positive nature of the Divine Attributes, maintaining, 
for example, that Allah is knowing and powerful in the sense that He 
is not ignorant or powerless. 

al-Farabi: (Latin, Al-Phrarabius), Abu Nasr Muhammad Ibn al-Farakh. 
Al-Farabi was born near Farab in Turkistan. He was a philosopher, 
leading logician and expositor of Plato and Aristotle, the founder of 
Islamic neo-Platonism. He contributed to philosophy, logic, sociolo- 
gy, science, and music. He was best known as the "Second Teacher", 
Aristotle being the first. He is said to have grown up in Damascus. 
He studied philosophy at night, while working as a gardener in the 
day. He died in 339/950. He wrote many books on all sorts of topics. 

Ghaylan ad-Dimishql: Abu Marwan Ghaylan ibn Muslim al-Qibti. 
(Qibt means either Copt or from the Himyar sub-tribe Qibt). He was 
the second most important Qadarite. His father was a mawla of 



'Uthman and he was a secretary in the administration in Damascus, 
He left a collection of letters. As well as being a Qadarite, he was 
also a Murji'ite and Kharijite. He was executed towards the end of 
the reign of Hisham (c. 116/731). 

al-Ghazali: Muhammad ibn Muhammad, Abu Hamid at-Tusi, (Latin, 
Algazel), (450/1058 - 505/1111). He taught at the Nizamiyya 
Madrasa before he became a Sufi. He suffered a spiritual crisis in 
490/1095 that resulted in a speech impediment and nervous break- 
down; he then gave up the academic life for the ascetic regime of a 
Sufi. He was the author of many books, especially Tahafut al- 
Falasifa ("The Incoherence of the Philosophers") and Ihyd' 'Ulum 
ad-Dfn. He attempted to defuse the tensions between philosophy 
and theology and used syllogism to rebut Neoplatonism and bolster 
Islamic doctrine. He criticised philosophers for denying the 
Resurrection and for asserting the eternality of the universe. His cri- 
tique of causality anticipates Hume's, using the Ash'arite position 
that Allah is the only real cause, and thus denying the so-called 
necessity between cause and effect. Simultaneity, he asserted, is illu- 

Ibn Bajja: Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Yahya, (Latin, Avempace), an 
Arabic philosopher. He was born in Saragossa near the end of the 
5th/l 1th century. He led a wandering life for a time. He died in Fez 
in Ramadan 533/1139 of poison. When young, he was a wazir for 
the Murabit governor, Abu Bakr ibn Tifalwit, and later on in Seville 
for Yahya ibn Yusuf ibn Tashfln. He stated that the philosopher 
must order his own life as a solitary individual, shun the company of 
non-philosophers and concentrate on reaching his own final goal of 
achieving intuitive knowledge through contact with the Active 

Ibn JIazm: ( AU ibn Ahmad az-Zahiri, born in Cordoba in 384/994. He 
was the main representative of the Zahirite school. He had to with- 
draw to his family estate where he died in 456/1064. His al-Fisdl 
fi'l-Milal in which he combats the Mu'tazilite position was written 
between 418/1027 and 421/1030. 

Ibn Rushd: Abu'l-Walld Muhammad ibn Ahmad, (Latin, Averroes). Ibn 
Rushd was a genius with encyclopaedic knowledge. He spent a great 
part of his fruitful life as a judge and as a physician. Yet he was 



known in the West for being the great commentator on the philoso- 
phy of Aristotle. He was born in Cordova, Spain in 520/1128. Ibn 
Rushd said that true happiness for man can surely be achieved 
through mental and psychological health, and people cannot enjoy 
psychological health unless they follow ways that lead to happiness 
in the hereafter, and unless they believe in God and His oneness. His 
book on jurisprudence Biddyat al-Mujtahid wa-Nihayat al~ 
Muqtasid has been held as possibly the best book on the MalikI 
School of fiqh. He died in 595/1198. 

Ibn Sina: Abu 'All al-Husayn ibn 'Abdullah (Latin, Avicenna), He was 
born around 370/980 near Bukhara (now Uzbekistan) and died in 
428/1037 in Hamadan, Persia. Avicenna was the most influential of 
all Arabic philosopher-scientists. He studied logic and metaphysics 
under some of the best teachers of his day but then continued his 
studies on his own. In particular he studied medicine. He work on 
almost every conceivable topic. In philosophy, he was the champion 
of Islamic Neo-Platonism, incorporating an illuminist (Ishraqi) ten- 
dency which shows Isma'lH influence. 

Ibn Tufayl: Abu Bakr, from Wadi Ash, today Guadix, Spain. He lived 
from around 494/1100 to 581/1185. A philosopher and physician, 
his mystical philosophy is presented in a novel, Hayy ibn Yaqian, 
which develops Neo-Platonic themes. 

al-'ljll: 'Adud ad-Din, 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Ahmad, a theologian and 
philosopher. His principle works were al-Mawaqif and a catechism, 
al-'Aqa'id al-'Adildiyya. He was from Ig, a fortress in Persia, and 
was a qadl and teacher in Shiraz. He died in 756/1355. 

Jahm ibn Safwan: Abu Muhriz ar-Rasibi of Samarqand, the founder of 
the Jahmite school. His doctrines first surfaced in Tirmidh. He 
denied the Divine Attributes and held that man's actions are purely 
determined by Allah, that Allah is "everywhere", and that the 
Qur'an was created. He also asserted that Heaven and Hell will pass 
away because eternity is impossible. He was executed in 128/745 by 
Salim ibn Ahwaz in Marw for denying that Allah spoke to the 
Prophet Musa. 

al-Jubba'i: Abu 'AH Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'l-Wahhab, one of the early 
Imams of the Basran Mu'tazilites who was very proficient in the sci- 
ence of kalam. He was born in Jubba in Khuzistan and studied under 



ash-Shahham, the head of the Mu'tazilites there. Al-Ash'ari studied 
with him for a period of forty years and then reversed his position 
and became the Imam of the people of the Sunna. He had excellent 
debates with him. Al-JubbS'i died in 303/915. He systematised the 
position of the Mu'tazilites. 

al-Juwayni: Abu'l-Ma'ali 'Abdu'l-Malik ibn 'Abdullah, Imam of the 
Two Harams, and the shaykh of al-Ghazall. He died in Nishapur in 
478/1085. He was the outstanding Ash'arite mutakalllm of his time 
and introduced al-Ghazali to kalam* His Ash'arite treatise is entitled 

Al-Ka g bl: Abu'l-Qasim 'Abdullah ibn Mahmud al-Ka'bl al-BalkhT, (d. 
318/929-31). He was the leader of the Mu'tazilties of Baghdad after 
al-Khayyat and the foremost representative of the Mu'tazilite atom- 
ists. He maintained that accidents do not endure for two moments. 
He has many similarities to al-Ash'ari, who was interested in his 

al-Khayyat: Abu'l-Husayn 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Muhammad. He was 
the leader of the Mu'tazilites in Baghdad in the second half of the 
third/ninth century. He was al-Ka'bi's teacher. He went to extremes 
in maintaining that the non-existent is a thing because there is infor- 
mation known about it. He wrote a book in defence of Mu'tazilism 
entitled Kitab al-Intisar. 

al-Kindi: Abu Yusuf Ya'qub ibn Ishaq, (Latin, AMndus). He was the 
first outstanding Islamic philosopher, known as "the philosopher of 
the Arabs". Al-Kindi was born in about 182/800 of noble Arabic 
descent in Kufa where his father was governor. He studied in Basra 
and later moved to Baghdad where he flourished under the khalifs 
al-Ma*mun and al-Mu ? tasim. He concerned himself not only with 
those philosophical questions which had been considered by the 
Aristotelian Neoplatonists of Alexandria, but also with such miscel- 
laneous subjects as astrology, medicine, Indian arithmetic, the man- 
ufacture of swords, and cooking. He is known to have written more 
than 270 works (mostly short treatises), a considerable number of 
which are extant, some in Latin translations. He died possibly about 

al-Majrifi: Abu'l-Qasim Maslama (d. c. 398/1008). An Andalusian sci- 
entist who was the first to introduce the study of the sciences to the 



western Islamic world. He was born in Madrid and moved to 
Cordoba where he established a school. He also produced a summa- 
ry of the Epistles of the Brethren of Purity (Ikhwan as-Safa), a secret 
Isma'IlI philosophico-religious society which developed at Basra. 

al-Maturidi: Abu Mansur Muhammad ibn Muhammad. Along with al- 
Ash'ari, with whom he was contemporary, he represents the main- 
stream view of kalam. Very little is known about his life. He was 
from Maturid, a small place outside Samarqand. He studied Hanafi 
fiqh and kalam and took a rational approach to kalam. Two of his 
works survive, Ta'wllat al-Qur'an and Kitdb at-Tawhid. He died in 
333/944. Abu Hanifa is considered a Maturidite in his kalam. 

There were reckoned to be thirteen differences between al- 
Maturidi' s ideas and those of al-Ash'ari: six in ideas and seven in 
expression. For example, a Maturidite would say, "I am truly a 
believer", while an Ash'arite would say, "I am a believer if Allah 
wills." Al-Maturidi accords human free will the logic of its conse- 
quences, i.e. the just are saved on that account, while with al- 
Ash'ari, since Allah's will is unfathomable it is theoretically possi- 
ble that the just will go to Hell. However, on this point, the 
Ash'arites have come around to the Maturidite position. Indeed, the 
Maturidite position has steadily penetrated the Ash'arite position so 
that the modern Sunni Muslim is usually a Maturidl-Ash'arite, 
rather than the other way around. Al-Maturidi did not mind dogmat- 
ic antinomies: depending on how you look at it, man has free will 
but is predestined, and the Speech of Allah is both created and 

an-Nazzam: Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Sayya. He was born and educated 
in Basra, and died around 221/836 (or 845) in Baghdad where he 
had been summoned by al-Ma*mun in 203/818. He was a very 
important Mu'tazilite. He accepted predestination and denied the 
existence of the Divine Attributes. A brilliant poet, philologist and 
dialectician, he studied under Abu'l-Hudhayl and then founded his 
own school. He devoted a great deal of time to refuting 
Manichaeism and the Dahris. He was very zealous in his defence of 
tawhid and the Message of the Qur'an. His writings have been lost. 

ar-Razi: Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Zakariyya ar-Razi (248/864 - 
316/930) was born at Rayy, Iran. Initially, he was interested in music 
but later on he learnt medicine, mathematics, astronomy, chemistry 



and philosophy from a student of Hunayn ibn Ishaq, who was well 
versed in the ancient Greek, Persian and Indian systems of medicine 
and other subjects. At an early age he gained eminence as an expert 
in medicine and alchemy. He was a sage, an alchemist and a 
philosopher. In medicine, his contribution was so significant that it 
can only be compared to that of Ibn Sina. The basic elements in his 
philosophical system are: the Creator, spirit, matter, space and time. 
He discusses their characteristics in detail and his concepts of space 
and time as constituting a continuum are outstanding. His philo- 
sophical views were, however, criticised by a number of other 
Muslim scholars of the era. He was influenced by Plato and 

ash-Shahrastani: Abu'1-Fath Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'i-Karim (469/1076 
- 548/1153), an historian and Ash'arite mutakallim from Khorasan 
who taught for three years in the Nizamiya Madrasa at Baghdad. He 
wrote one of the most comprehensive heresiographies in Arabic: 
Kitab al-Milal wa'n-Nihal. He also wrote a compendium of theolo- 
gy, Nihayat al-Qidam, which is extremely coherent and logical. 

as-Suhrawardi: Shihab ad-Din Yahya. He is nicknamed "al-Maqtul" 
(the murdered) or "ash-Shahid" (the martyr). Basing his ideas on 
Ibn Sfha, he equated God with absolute light and non-being as dark- 
ness, establishing a hierarcy of lights through a process of emana- 
tion. He founded the Ishraqi or illuminist school of philosophy. The 
substance of his thought is found in a trilogy: al-MasharV, al- 
Muqawamat t and Hikmat al-Ishraq. He was executed by Salah ad- 
Dln al-Ayyubi for heresy in 587/1 191, 

at-Taftazanl: Mas'ud ibn 'Umar, (722/1322 - 792/1390), a scholar of 
Herat in Khurasan who wrote on kalam, usul al-fiqh, grammar and 
bay an (style). He wrote a commentary on the Hanafi-Matundite 
'aqida of 'Umar an-Nasaft (d. 537/1142) which is entitled Shark al- 
'Aqa'id an-Nasafiya and has been translated by E.E. Elder. 

Wasi! ibn ( Ata': Abu Hudhayfa al-Ghazzal, the chief of the 
Mu'tazilites. He was born in Madina in 80/699-700 where he was a 
mawla. Four theses are ascribed to him: denial of Allah's eternal 
attributes, free will (with the Qadariya); intermediate position of a 
Muslim being between a Muslim and a kdfir when he commits a 
grave sin; and that one of the parties at Siffin was wrong- He died in 


Terms used in Sufism 

abad: after-time, eternity without beginning. The secret of after-time is 
the negation of lastness, 

'abd: slave, servant of Allah, the creature utterly dependent on its Lord 
and Creator for its existence and sustenance. 

abdal: plural of badL 

'abid: one who performs much 'ibada or worship. 

adab: correct behaviour, both inward and outward, good deportment. It 
is the deep courtesy observed in acts of worship as the person is 
aware that he is constantly dependent on and in the presence of 

'adam: the void, non-existence. For Ibn al-'Arabi, this is the realm of 
the possible out of which all the forms flood endlessly. 

afal: the acts, of Allah. 

afrad: (plural of fard), solitary individuals, people who are outside the 
jurisidiction of the Qutb and follow a solitary spiritual path. 

a had: "One", designating Allah* s unique oneness, disconnected from 
others. (See Qur'an 112:1), 

ahadlya: the transcendent unity which is not the object of any distinc- 
tive knowledge and so is not accessible to the creature; the state of 
unity which admits of no plurality whatsoever, the unity is the sum 
of all potentialities and as such is not an object of worship. 

ahl al-ma'rifa: the people of gnosis, the gnostics. 

ahwal: plural of hal. 

'alam al-ajsam: the world of physical bodies. 

'a Earn al-anir: the world of dominion, the non-spatial world of the 
angels and human spirits (also called 'dim al-malakUt). 

'alam al-arwah: the world of spirits, as distinct from 'alam al-mithal - 
the world of analogies, which is formal manifestation as a whole. 


'alam al-khalq 

'alam al-khalq: the material spatial world (also called 'dlam al-mulk 

wa shahada). 
'alam al- mi thai; "the world of analogies," the world of forms, both 

spiritual and physical. Corresponds to the 'alam al-khayaU the world 

of imagination. 
Alastu: Allah's declaration in the Qur'an (7:172): U A lastu bi-rab- 

bikum?" - 'Am I not your Lord?" which, when He created Adam, 

He asked of all the souls of Adam' s descendants that would exist 

until the end of the world. This is the primordial covenant (mlthaq) 

between Allah and mankind. 
alif : the first letter of the Arabic alphabet. It is often used as a symbol of 

Divine Unity. 
al- f Ama J : the Great Mist: primordial non-spatiality in non-time. The 

Prophet was asked, "Where was Allah before the creation of the uni- 
verse?" and he replied, "In the 'Ama'" 
amal: hope, a feeling in the heart that something good will happen. 
al-Amana: the trust or the moral responsibility or honesty, and all the 

duties which Allah has ordained. (See Qur'an 33:72). 
al-amr: the command, "Be!" (fcww) which translates possibilities into the 

manifest (fa yakuri). 
*aql: intellect, the faculty of reason. 
al-'Aql: the intellect, al-'Aql al-Awwal: the first Intellect, analogous to 

the Pen (al-Qalam). 
'arad (plural a'rad): an accidental or non-essential, ontic quality. The 

opposite of jawhar. 
'arif (plural 'drifun): gnostic, someone with direct knowledge of Allah. 
'ashiq: passionate lover, one who possesses 'ishq. 
awliya': the plural of wall. 
Awtad: the plural of watad. They are four of the Abdal and are part of 

the spiritual hierarchy. They have a certain spiritual station which is 

reflected in north, south, east and west. 
'ayn: the essence, the eye, the spring. 
'ayn al-basira: the inner eye of the heart. 
*ayn al-jam': perfect union. 
*ayn al-qalb: the eye of the heart, the organ of intuition. 



al-'ayn ath-thabita: archetype of a being, a source form in the Malakut. 
(The plural is a l ydn). 

'ayn al-yaqin: certainty itself. 

aynlya: whereness, 

azal: "pre- time," eternity without end; the negation of firstness, from the 
one who is described by it. 

bab al-abwab: "the door of doors", meaning repentance. 

badawa: what comes suddenly upon the heart from the Unseen because 
of joy or sorrow. 

badl (plural abdal): a gnostic in constant contemplation of Allah, often 
seen in more than one place at the same time. Badl means "substi- 
tute". Ibn al-'Arabi says: "They are seven. Whoever travels from one 
place and leaves his body in its form so that no one recognises that 
he has gone, only that one is a badl." Some say that they are forty. 

bakka'un: "those who weep constantly", a term used in reference to the 
early Sufis in Basra. 

baliV: affliction, trial, which is a sign of Divine love and necessary for 
spiritual development 

baqa': going on by Allah, when the Sufi returns to mankind after anni- 
hilation if ana '). 

baraka: blessing, any good which is bestowed by Allah, and especially 
that which increases, a subtle beneficient spiritual energy which can 
flow through things or people. 

barzakh: an interspace or dimension between two realities which both 
separates and yet links them. 

basira: insight. 

bast: expansion, an involuntary state over which a human being has no 
control. It is the expansion of the heart in the state of unveiling 
which arises from hope. The opposite of qabd. 

batin: inwardly hidden. 

batinl: inward, esoteric. 

ba'ya: giving allegiance to the shaykh. 

bi shar': a Persian term meaning "without SharVa", a term applied to 
those who disregard legal obligations. 



budala': another plural of badl. Ibn al-'Arabi says that they are not the 
same as iheAbdal, but are twelve other people. 

buruz: exteriorisation, being present at different places at the same time. 
{See badl). 

ad-Dahr: unending and everlasting time, not divided into past, present 
and future. Linear time is called "zaman" in Arabic. 

darwlsh: dervish, from the Persian darwesh, meaning poor person, the 
equivalent of the Arabic faqir. 

dawsa: "trampling", a ceremony which used to be performed by the 
Sa'diya in mawlids of the Prophet in Cairo. The shaykh would ride 
over the prone dervishes. 

Dhat: Essence, Quiddity, the Absolute Being stripped of all modes, rela- 
tions and aspects. Also called al-Mahiyya. 

dhawq: tasting, experience of direct knowledge, sapience (with the orig- 
inal sense of the Latin sapere, to taste). One of the first manifesta- 
tions on the Path. 

dhikr: lit. remembrance, mention. Commonly used, it means invocation 
of Allah by repetition of His names or particular formulae. Forms 
include: dhikr al-lisan, dhikr with the tongue; dhikr an-nafs, recol- 
lection of the self which is inward and not audible; dhikr al-qalb, the 
contemplation of the heart; dhikr ar-ruh, dhikr with the spirit; dhikr 
as-sirr, dhikr of the inner secret; dhikr al-khafi, secret recollection; 
dhikr akhfa al-khafi, the most secret remembrance of the secret. 

dhikru'llah: "remembrance or invocation of Allah". 

dhllla: lowliness, abasement to Allah. 

diwan: a collection of poems primarily concerned with the declaration 
of haqiqa, a description of the tafiqa, and confirmation of the 

du'a': supplication to Allah. 

dunya: this world, not as a cosmic phenomenon, but as experienced. 

ad-Durr al-Bayda': "the White Pearl", a term designating the First 

fahwani: "elocution", a technical term of Ibn al-'Arabl. It means Allah's 
directly addressing people in visionary encounters in the 'alam al- 



fa 'id a: a beneficial piece of knowledge which comes to a person. 

al-Falak al-Atlas: the Starless Heaven, the 'Arsh. 

fana': annihilation in Allah, the cessation of attributes, total withdrawal 
from the sensory. Based on the Qur'an: "Everyone on it will pass 
away." (55:26). 

fana' fi'llah: annihilation in Allah. 

fana' fi'r-rasul: "annihilation in the Messenger", deep love of the 
Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, which leads to 
love of Allah and ultimately annihilation in Allah. 

fana' fi'sh-shaykh: "annihilation in the shaykh", annihilation in the 
spiritual guide which leads to annihilation in the Prophet. 

faqlr (plural fitqara'): someone who is needy or poor, used to describe 
someone following a spiritual tradition since the creature is poor and 
the Creator rich. 

faqiranl: also afaqtra (plural faqirat), the feminine of faqir. 

faqr: voluntary indigence, spiritual poverty, absolute need of Allah on 
the part of creatures. "O mankind! You are the poor in need of Allah 
whereas Allah is the Rich beyond need, the Praiseworthy. " (35:15). 

faragh: leisure. Along with laziness, one of the great dangers for some- 
one on the spiritual path. 

fard: (singular of afrdd), a solitary individual. 

fardiya: singularity. 

farq: (sometimes tafriqa), separation, obscuring structures and creation 
and separating Allah from creation, awareness of creation by cre- 
ation. The opposite of jam '. 

fata: "noble youth", someone who is generous and faithful, a practition- 
er of futuwwa. Al-Qushayri says, "He has no enemy and does not 
care whether he is a wall or an unbeliever." 

fath: an opening in the soul which sets someone on the Path to realisa- 
tion. (Cf. futuh). 

fayd: overflowing, emanation, effusion, manifestation. 

fikr: reflection, seeking the meaning of things as manifestations of the 
Divine. Also tafakkur. 

fitra: the first nature, the natural, primal condition of mankind in harmo- 
ny with nature. 



fu'ad: the inner heart. According to an-Nurl, that part of the heart con- 
tented only with gnosis. 

fuqara': plural of faqlr. 

fiirqan: discrimination, distinguishing the truth from the false. 

futuh: "opening", the opening of the expression outwardly and sweet- 
ness inwardly, and the opening of disclosing and unveiling, 

futuwwa: placing others above one's self, as manifested in generosity, 
altruism, self-denial, indulgence for people's shortcomings. 

ghafla: heedlessness, the enemy of dhikr. 

al-Gham: "the Rich-beyond-need" or "Independent", He who has no 
need of anything. This describes Allah while the creature is poor 

Ghawth: "succourer", "nurturer", characterised by enormous generosi- 
ty, the epithet of the Qutb, the head of the awliya'. Some say that he 
is directly below the Qutb. Al-Ghawth al-A'zam, "the Greatest 
Help", is used to refer to Shaykh 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilani. Shaykh 
Abu Madyan was considered the Ghawlh of his age. 

Ghayb: the Unseen, unmanifest, that which is hidden from the eyes 
whether or not it is perceived by the heart; or it can be something 
which is beyond any sort of perception, such as the future. 

al-Ghayb al-Mutlaq: "the Absolutely Unknowable" in reference to the 
Essence of Allah. 

ghayba: absence, the absence of the heart from all that is other than 

ghayr: "other", what is other-than- Allah. 

ghazal: a love poem. 

ghina: wealth, meaning having no need of other than Allah. 

ghurba: exile, from which the one in exile intensely desires to return to 
witnessing the Creator, 

haba': fine dust, the passive universal substance. 

hadath: situated in time. The opposite is qidam. 

hadir: present, wholly aware and not distracted. 

hadra: presence, al-hadra al-ilahiya, the Divine Presence, sometimes 
synonymous with hudur. Also used to designate 'imdra, a form of 
dhikr done in a circle. 



Hahut: Divine ipseity, beyond-being, absoluteness. 

hajis: firm thought. According to Ibn al-'Arabl, the first thought is the 
divine thought and is never wrong. Sahl at-Tustari called it the first 
cause and the digging of the thought. When it is realised in the self, 
it becomes will, and when it is repeated it becomes himma and the 
fourth time it is called resolution. When it is directed to action, it is 
called aim. When the action is begun, it is called intention. 

hal (plural ahwal); state, your transient inward state, (cf. maqam). 

halqa: a circle, gathering. 

haqa'iq: realities, the plural of haqiqa. 

haqiqa: an essential reality which does not admit of abrogation and 
remains in equal force from the time of Adam to the end of the 

haqiqa Muhammadiya: "the reality of Muhammad", the archetypal 
Prophet, the Perfect Man through whom Divine consciousness is 
manifested to Himself, the light in which all things have their origin. 

al-Haqq: the Real, the Absolute Truth, Allah, being the opposite of 
khalq, creation. 

al-haqq al-makhlfiq bihi: "The Truth through which Creation Occurs", 
the Breath of the Merciful, (cf. Qur'an 16:3). 

haqq al-yaqin: real certitude, the reality of certainty which is reached in 

haw a: passion, desire (usually not praiseworthy), inclination to some- 
thing enjoyed by animal appetites; also used in the plural (ah\va'), 
meaning opinions which, swayed by passion, have moved away 
from the truth. 

hawajim: "assaults", impulses or thoughts which involuntarily enter the 

hay am an: passionate love and ecstatic bewilderment. 

haya': shame, modesty, which demands awareness of Allah's presence 
and behaving accordingly. 

hayba: awe, reverential fear, a state in which contemplation of Allah's 
majesty predominates. The opposite of uns, 

hayra: bewilderment, confusion, continual amazement, perplexity, in 
which every intellectual channel is blocked; this results in an inten- 



sity which allows for illumination, because only finite things can be 
expressed in words and there is no way to articulate the infinite and 
ineffable, either mentally or vocally. Ash-Shibli said, "Real gnosis is 
the inability to achieve gnosis." How can the temporal grasp the 
Timeless, the finite the Infinite, the limited the Limitless? Out of 
confusion comes fusion. 

al-HayuIa al-Kull: the Primal Whole which contains the entire universe 
by potentiality and by competence. 

hijab: "veiling", in Suflsm, meaning the impression produced on the 
heart by phenomena which prevent it from seeing the truth. This is 
inevitable in this world. (See Qur'an 42:51). 

hijab al-ma'rifa: the veil of gnosis, mentioned by an-Niffari which in 
itself is a barrier between man and Allah. "Knowledge is the greatest 

faljjir: chant, constant refrain. 

hikma: wisdom. 

him ma: spiritual aspiration, yearning to be free of illusion; highest ener- 
gy impulse in a human to reconnect with reality. There are two 
types: jibilla, inborn, and acquired. 

hirs: greed, avarice, 

hiss: the faculty of sensation, the domain of the sense perception, the 
opposite of ma 'na. 

hizb: litany, special prayer formula. 

hubb: love. 

hudur: the presence of the heart with Allah. 

hudur wa ghayba: presence near Allah and absence from oneself. 

hudufh: located in time. 

hujjat al-Haqq 'ala'l-khalq: "the demonstrative proof of the Real for 
the creation " meaning the Perfect Man who was the proof demon- 
strated to the angels when Adam informed them of the names of 
things, a knowledge which they had not been given previously. 

hu.jum: what comes forcefully into the heart from the moment without 
any action on your part. 

hulul: "indwelling", incarnation, a heretical doctrine. 



hurriya: freedom, carrying out the rights owed being a slave of Allah 
which renders a person tree from other than Allah and free from 
being enslaved to events through awareness of the Creator. 

husn az-zann: "good opinion", to think well of Allah and the slaves of 
Allah. This implies complete trust in Allah since Allah says in a 
hadlth qtidsT, "I am in My servant's opinion of Me." 

huwa: (or hit) "He", Allah. 

huwiya: word derived from the pronoun huwa (He), meaning He-ness, 
Divine Ipseity; the Reality in the World of the Unseen. 

huzn: sorrow. 

'ibada: act of worship. 

ibn al-waqt: "child of the moment," see waqt. 

idhn: permission, usually either to be a shaykh, or to practice dhikr 
given by a shaykh. 

ihsan: absolute sincerity to Allah in oneself: it is to worship Allah as 
though you were seeing Him because He sees you. 

yad: to give existence to something. 

ikhlas: sincerity, pure unadulterated genuineness. 

ikhtilat: to muddle things up and misconstrue things. 

ikhtisas: Allah's singling out a person for a specific blessing or mercy. 

ilahi: a Turkish genre of mystical poems in popular metre sung at gath- 
erings of dhikr. 

ilham: inspiration. 

'ilm: knowledge. 

ilm laduni: directly-given and inspired knowledge from Allah. 

*ilm al-qulub: the science of the hearts, the process of which will bring 
about gnosis. 

ilm al-yaqin: knowledge of certainty. 

'imara: technical term for the collective dhikr also called hadra. 

inaba: turning in repentance, returning from minor sins to love. (cf. 

inbisat: see bast. 

*indlya: "at-ness". 

infirad: solitude. 



innlya: "that-ness". When the Divine Reality described by the attribute 

of disconnection is witnessed, it annihilates every source except it. 
inqibad: anguish. (See qabd). 

al-insan al-kabir: lit. "Great Man", the macrocosm, the universe. 
al-insan al-kamil: the "perfect man" or universal man. Sufi term for one 

who has realised all levels of being and understanding. 
intibah: "becoming aware", when Allah restrains His servant out of 

concern for him. 
inzi'aj: disturbance, the effect of admonition in the heart of the believer. 
Iqan: assurance. 
irada: will, volition, aspirancy, 
'irfan: gnosis, a term used mostly by the Shi 'a. 
'Isawians: For Ibn al-'Arabl, this has a special meaning: the 'Isawian is 

the one who has brought his timeless reality to life. 
isharat: allusions, hints, indications of meanings too fine to be 

expressed directly, 
'ishq: passionate and unbounded love for Allah. 
ishraq: illumination. 
ism: name, noun, the Divine Name. Sometimes al-hm al-A'zam, the 

Greatest Name, Allah. Al-hm al-Jami\ "the All-inclusive Name" is 

isqat at-tadbir: dropping of management and human planning in favour 

of Allah's planning, a term used by Ibn 'Ata'llah. Similar to tafwid. 
isti'dad: predisposition, aptitude, preparedness for receiving knowledge 

or illumination. 
istidara: circularity, which is the nature of things, since Allah is the 

First and the Last and all things return to Him. (Cf. Qur'an 11:123, 

31:55, etc.). 
istidraj: baiting by degrees, a fall from grace by a hidden chain of 

istighfar: asking forgiveness of Allah. 
istilahat: technical vocabularies. 

istiqama: being straight, putting into practice the Sunna of the Prophet. 
ithar: altruism, to prefer others to oneself. 
itmi'an: tranquillity, spiritual peace. 



ittihad: becoming one, human individuality passing away in the Reality, 

like a grain of salt in the sea. 
'iyan: actual direct vision. 
Jabarut: the world of divine power, the Kingdom of Lights, "between' 

Mulk and Malakut. 
jadhb: divine attraction which overpowers a person. 
jalal: the attributes of force, of Divine awe-inspiring majesty. 
jalwa: disclosure, the slave emerging from retreat with the attributes of 

the Real. 
jam': gatheredness, combining all into the whole and ignoring structures 

in existence in an undifferentiated field of awareness by witnessing 

Allah. Its opposite is farq. Its climax is jam' al-jam'. 
jam* al-jam*: "gatheredness of gatherness", perfect union, confirming 

the reality without the /amir's being in it being in any way experien- 
jamal: Divine beauty. 

jam'iya: concentration, comprehensiveness. 
jawhar: lit. "jewel", substance, specifically the essence of intrinsic 

being of a form. 
jibilla: innate disposition. 
al-jihad al-asghar: the lesser jihad, meaning physical fighting against 

the unbelievers. 
al -jihad al-akbar: the greater jihad, meaning the inner struggle against 

the self. 
jilala: name in the Arab West for the Qadiriya tartqa. 
kamal: perfection of gnosis - being disconnected from attributes and 

their effects. 
karamat: marks of honour, miracles. Distinct from mu jizat - prophetic 

miracles, things which cannot be imitated. Both are kharq al-'adat, 

the extraordinary breaking of normal patterns. 
ka's: "the cup", the heart of the shaykh from which the "wine" of the 

knowledge of the Divine is poured into the hearts of his murlds in 

the "tavern" of the zawlya. 
kashf: unveiling, knowledge which does not require proof as it is a 

direct perception of the true nature of things. 



al-Kathib: the Slipping Sand-Heap, the heap where all souls will assem- 
ble in the Next World, each taking its place according to its spiritual 

kathif: dense, thick, the opposite of lattf (subtle). 

kawn: Being, all phenomena, 

khalifa: "successor", the representative of the shaykh, who is more 
accomplished than a muqaddam or na'ib. The plural is khulqfa'. 

khafq: "creation", both the act of creation or the result of the act, hence 
the cosmos. 

khalwa: spiritual retreat, seclusion, in order to remember Allah. 

khamr: the "wine" of direct knowledge of the Divine, 

khanqah: zawiya, a place where seekers of Allah live and meet. 

kharq al-'adat: miracle, an extra-ordinary event, literally it means the 
"breaking of the normal pattern of things". 

khashya: fear of Allah. 

khassa: special, elite. 

khatir (plural khawdtir): a passing thought, which is quickly removed 
by another. There are three kinds: those which come from Shaytan, 
which are a sort of whispering; those from the self, which are nig- 
gling and arise from appetites; and those which come from Allah, 
which come quickly and with a sort of clarity. 

khatim: seal, khatim an-nablyym: the seal of prophethood, the last of 
the Prophets. 

khatm: seal, khatm al-wilaya: the seal of sainthood, often used of 'Isa. 

khawf: fear, dread of the Creator and Master of the Day of Judgement. 

khayal: imagination. With Ibn al-'Arabl, it has an inner and outer mean- 
ing. Its outer meaning is the ordinary meaning of imagination. In its 
inner meaning, it is the faculty by which we solidify objects which 
are, in reality, not there inasmuch as the sensory is not real. 

khidhlan: abandonment, when Allah leaves man to his own devices. 

khidma: service of others. 

al-Khidr: or al-Khadir, the Green one, whose journey with Musa is 
mentioned in the Qur'an 18:60-82. He may or may not be a Prophet, 
and appears often to people, usually to test their generosity. 



khirqa: a patched robe worn as a sign of poverty and devotion, (cf. 

muraqq 'a). 
khudu': humble subraissiveness, yielding before Allah. 
al-Kibrit al-Ahmar: "Red Sulphur", the Philosopher's Stone; used to 

describe the transformative action of the shaykh on the disciple. 
kullfyat al-wujud: universals of being, 
kun: 'Be!' the creating command. 
kunh: true nature. 
Lahut: Godhood, Divine Nature. 
latlfa (plural lata' if): all pervading energy within an organism (similar 

to the Taoist chVt)\ an indication with a very subtle meaning which 

flashed in the understanding but cannot be verbally expressed. 
lawa'ih: glimmers, sudden intuitions, the first gleams affirming the 

object of desire coming, as it were, as flashes in the dark, a sensory 

sensation, the precursors of lawami '. 
lawami': gleams, intuitions of spiritual light to the heart which last two 

moments. They are glimpses of meaning which are perceived by the 

ruh. These are the first genuine lights, the precursors of tawali ', 
Lawh: board, tablet. Al-Lawh al-Mahfuz is the Preserved Tablet in the 

Unseen which is also referred to as the Umm al-Kitab, the place of 

recording what will be, the repository of destiny, 
Layla: "night", also one of the names used to indicate the Beloved. 
laylatu'I-fuqara': "the night of the fuqara"\ meaning the gathering of 

dhikr attended by the fuqara' with their shaykh or one of his 

muqaddams, usually on Thursday night. 
lisan al-hal: the tongue of the state, where the state gives expression to 

the inward of the person. 
lubb: "core", the central locus of awareness in the human being, the 

heart of the heart. 
lutf: kindness or grace, Allah's help which permeates things; the all-per- 
vading texture of the Universe that cannot be grasped or defined. 
mahabba: love. Ibn 'Arlf defines it as "a certain emotional subjection of 

the heart which prevents one from yielding to anything except his 




mahall: locus, the place in which Allah's prescencing is experienced: 

the heart. 
mahw: effacement, the removal of the attributes of normality, or the 

mahya: vigil, the night recitation of prayers or dhikr through Thursday 

night until Friday. This was first inaugurated by ash-Shunl in Cairo 

in 897/1492. 
ma'Iya: "with-ness". 
majdhub: attracted, someone who is enraptured and bewildered by the 

effect of Divine attraction. 
majmu' : "totality", both the Real and creation. 
makhafa: fear, as khawf, 

Malakut: the angelic world, the Kingdom of Unseen forms. 
malama: blame, the path of blame taken by some Sufis which involves 

deliberately provoking people to have a bad opinion of them, so that 

it is only possible to turn to Allah, 
ma'luh: one in thrall to God. 
ma'na: "meaning". In Sufic terms, spiritual perception of the subtleties 

behind or within sensory forms. 
manajat: prayer as an intimate dialogue between an individual and his 

personal Lord. 
manzil (plural manazil): way station, stage, a term denoting a particular 

phase in the gnostic development of the seeker. Each stage has cer- 
tain qualities and knowledges. 
maqam (plural maqamdt): a station of spiritual knowledge, more long 

lasting than a haL 
marabout: a French word from murabit, a term for a Sufi in North 

marbub: one who has a lord, a vassal. 

ma'rifa: gnosis, direct, experiential knowledge of higher realities, wit- 
nessing the tights of the Names and Attributes of Allah in the heart. 
mawadda: love, affection. 
mawsim: see moussem. 

mawtin: abode, the world or domain in which we dwell. 
misbaha (plural masabih): prayer beads. (Cf. tasblh). 



mithal: In Sufism, this has to do with a modality of experiencing reality. 
In it, an analogue is produced which is somewhat like a hologram, a 
multi-dimensional metaphor capable of conveying more than one 
meaning simultaneously, and then this model is grasped intellectual- 
ly in a non-linear way. 

mithaq: covenant, the primordial covenant between Allah and the crea- 

moussem: French word from tnawsim, a festival of dhikr celebrated by a 
wall and his followers. 

mudhakara: a discourse or exposition in a meeting of dhikr. 

muh ad ar a: the presence of the heart when the proof comes again and 
again. Ibn al-'Arabi mentions that it is the conversation between the 
Divine Names regarding the realities. 

muhadatha: discussion, when Allah addresses the gnostics from the 
visible world, as when Musa was addressed from the Burning Bush. 

muhaqqiq: verifier, one who has understanding of reality. 

muhasaba: self-analysis, reviewing oneself, one's actions and thoughts. 

muhibb: lover 

muh sin: someone who possesses the quality ofihsan. 

mujahada: self-mortification, forcing the self to do things it finds diffi- 
cult and opposing passions and desires. 

mujarrad: "disengaged", divested of all worldly matters, 

mukashafa: unveiling, it is marked by continual amazement with 
Allah's infinite greatness. (See kashf). 

mukhlas: one who has been made sincere. 

mukhlis: one who is sincere. 

Mulk: the visible realm, the kingdom of solid forms. 

miinajat: intimate conversations, prayers. 

munazalat: mutual way-stations, a term used by Ibn al-'Arabi for sta- 
tions of unveiling which involves effort on the part of the person as 
well as unveiling coming from Allah. 

muqabala: "encounter", the name of the Mevlevi dance. 

muqaddam: "one who is promoted," the representative of the shaykh; 
(also na'ib). 



murabit: "one who is garrisoned", originally, in North Africa, someone 

living in a ribat, a fortified stronghold serving both religious and 

military functions. 
murad: the one who is pulled by Allah from his own will. All things are 

arranged for him so that he passes through the stations without any 


muraqaba: vigilance; recollection; an aspect of reflection (tafakkur); 
waiting on a spiritual presence; permanent state of awareness, not a 
spiritual exercise. 

muraqqa'a: patched cloak worn by Sufis. (Cf. khirqa), 

murld: disciple. He is the one who is stripped of his will (irada) and 
hands himself over to his shaykh, his guide. 

mtrrshid: a spiritual guide. 

muru'a: (also muruwwa) manliness, the sum total of virtuous virile 

musafir: traveller, one who travels with his intellect through intelligible 

musamara: night talk, when Allah addresses the gnostics from the 
World of the secrets and the Unseen, as when the angel brings it into 
the heart. Hence it often cannot be expressed verbally and communi- 
cated to others. 

mushahada: witnessing, contemplation, vision within the heart, seeing 
things as evidence of tawhid, or grasping an indication; the fruit of 

mushtaq: one who yearns. 

muta'ahhib: "prepared, ready", someone with the right spiritual apti- 
tude following the Sufic Path. 

mutabarikun: "those who want a blessing," people who join in a tarlqa 
merely for the blessing and are passive members. 

mutahayyiz: spatially confined, a property of physical things. 

mutamakkin: one who is steadfast and does not waver in his station. 

muttaqfm: pious and righteous persons who fear Allah much (and so 
abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbid- 
den), and love Allah much (and so perform all kinds of good deeds 
which He has ordained). 



nafas ar-Rahman: "breath of the Merciful," the manifestation of possi- 
bilities, in which the entire creation is constantly renewed in each 

nafs: the self. Usually in reference to the lower self - either the self 
which commands to evil, or the reproachful self. 

an-nafs al-'ammara: the insinuating self which is wholly evil and total- 
ly under the control of passions and bent only on self-gratification. 
It is totally blind to any higher reality. 'The lower self of man com- 
mands to evil acts except where my Lord shows mercy. " (Qur'an 

an-nafs al-lawwama: the self-reproaching self, which is indecisive in 
choosing between good and evil and is constantly embroiled in an 
inner struggle. It is unable to overcome the impulses of the lower 
self while it nonetheless recognises the higher one. "No, I swear by 
the self-reproaching self. " (Qur'an 75:2). 

an-nafs al-mulhama: the inspired self, which recognises its faults and 
strives to correct them. "By the self and what proportioned it and 
inspired it with depravity or godliness!" (Qur'an 91:7-8). 

an-nafs al-mutma'inna: Finally there is the self at peace, which is illu- 
minated and acts according to the good and is therefore liberated. 
"O self at peace, return to your Lord, well-pleased, well-pleasing. 
Enter among My servants. Enter My Garden. " (Qur'an 89:27-30), 

nafth: literally, spitting, often meaning to cast something into the mind. 

na'ib (plural nuwwdb)*. the representative of the shaykh, synonym of 

najwa: the private talk between Allah and each of His slaves on the Day 
of Resurrection. It also means a secret counsel or conference or con- 

nakira: non-recognition, the opposite of gnosis (ma'rifa). 

nasik (plural nussak): a person of great piety, ascetic. 

Nasut: manhood, human nature. 

nisyan: forgetfulness. 

nujaba': "the nobles", part of the spiritual hierarchy. They are eight (or 
forty) men occupied with bearing the burdens of creation who do 
not act on their own behalf. 



nuqaba': They are twelve (or 300) "chiefs" and are part of the spiritual 
hierarchy. They know the hidden things of the selves and con- 
sciences and are able to cure people of their ignorance. 

pir: Persian for murshid, 

qabd: contraction, an involuntary state over which a human being has no 
control. It is the contraction of the heart in a state of being veiled. 
The opposite of bast, the residue of burned-up hopes. 

qadim: eternal, ancient. 

qahr: force, when Allah forcefully annihilates a person's desires and 
restrains his lower self. 

qalandar: wandering dervish. 

qalb (plural qulub): heart; the faculty for directly perceiving spiritual 
realities which the mind cannot grasp. 

qanitun: They are those whom Allah has assigned obedience, and that is 
obedience to Allah in all that He commands and forbids. This is 
only after the descent of the SharVa, and what is before the descent 
of SharVa is not called qanut or obedience, but it is called good and 
noble character and doing what is proper. 

qarar: settledness, the departure of vacillation from a person. 

qaslda (plural qasa'id): ode, poem. (See diwan). 

Qawm: "people", "tribe", meaning the Sufis when so used. 

Qawwall: Sufi singing in Urdu and also in Persian. 

qidam: timeless eternity, eternity which is not affected at all by temporal 

qubba: kubba, a domed shrine. 

qulub: "hearts", the plural of qalb. 

qurb: nearness, proximity to Allah, the closest of which is 'two bow's 
lengths', the nearest a slave could approach a king. 

Qutb: the pole, the axis of the spiritual hierarchy. 

Rabb: Lord, master; the particular Divine name which rules a creature. 

raghba: desire, longing, the desire of the self for the reward, the desire 
of the heart for the reality, and the secret of the secret for the Real. 

Rahamut: sourcehood, the presence of mercy. 

rahba: fear, dread. In the outward it comes from the Threat. Inwardly it 



is about the change of knowledge. The fear of the secret is about the 

prior Decree, 
raja': hope, hope for the Garden, hope for Allah's pleasure, hope for the 

vision of the King. 
rajul: the singular of rijal. 
rams: negation of a substance, together with every trace of it, from the 

ramz (plural rumuz)'. a symbol. 
raqa'iq: stories which provoke feelings and emotions. 
raqiqa: a very fine, invisible filament of light which extends from one 

thing to another, thus connecting them over great distances. 
rayn: a veil of disbelief and error over the heart which can only be 

removed by faith. It comes from an ayat of the Qur'an: "No indeed! 

Rather what they have earned has rusted up their hearts " (83: 14). 
ribat: the stronghold traditionally used by the Muslims to prepare for 

their jihad against the enemies of Islam, situated at exposed points 

of the frontier; later a tariqa-ba&td centre of religious instruction. 
rida: serene and joyful contentment with Allah's Decree, when there is 

a balance between fear and hope. 
Rijal: "men", meaning the men of gnosis and illumination. This has no 

gender attached to it in this usage and so it is also applied to women. 

The singular is rajul. 
riya ? : showing off, doing actions for the sake of being seen to do them. 
riyada: discipline, the discipline of adab is to leave the nature of the 

self. In general, it involves inculcating good character. 
rizq: sustenance, both spiritual and physical, which comes from Allah. 
rii*: heart 

ruba'iyat: quatrains. 
mbublya: lordship, the quality of being a lord. The opposite is 

rabut: plural of ribat. 

ruh (plural arwah): the spirit which gives life. 
ruhani: spiritual. 

ruhaniyya: pure spirituality, a non-spatial zone. 
Rukhkh: the phoenix. 


ru una 

ru'una: 'levity,' stopping at the level of nature. 

ru'ya: vision, dream. 

sabirun: people who are patient and steadfast, 

sabr: patience, steadfastness, self-control, endurance, both physical and 

spiritual, self restraint to act by what is commanded and to abandon 

what is forbidden. 

safar: journey, it is the journey of the heart when it begins to turn to 
Allah by dhikr. 

sahq: pulverisation, the disappearance of your inward and outward 
structure under the weight of divine force. 

sahr: sleeplessness. 

sahw: sobriety, acting in accordance with the Sunna, thus concealing 

inward intoxication. 
■ saklna: an enveloping stillness which Allah sends down on the hearts. 

as-salat 'ala'n-Nabi: the prayer on the Prophet. 

salih (plural salihun): righteous, a spiritually developed person, one who 
is in the right place at the right time doing the right thing, 

salik: traveller to Allah. The salik is grounded in the necessary wisdom 
to prevent becoming mad from the intoxication of yearning and thus 
acts outwardly in accordance with the Shan'a while being inwardly 

sama': listening session, listening to songs about Allah, so that the heart 
may open. 

Samad: the Real in its endless effulgence of creative energy, by which 
the whole universe of endless forms emerge from the possible into 
the existent. It is the richness whose wealth is every form in cre- 
ation. Allah is in need of nothing and everything is in need of Him. 

satr: covering, veiling, concealing, the manner in which existence con- 
ceals Divine Unity. The opposite of tajallT. 

sayyahun: roving angels who roam the earth looking for gatherings of 
dhikr ; from which the scent of musk emanates in the Unseen. 

shajarat al-kawn: "the tree of existence", the entire universe. 

shathiyat: ecstatic statements. 

shawq: the yearning of the heart to meet the Beloved. 



shaykh (plural shuyukh): in Sufism, the spiritual teacher who guides you 
from knowledge of your self to knowledge of your Lord. 

Shaykh al-Akbar: "the Greatest Shaykh", a title given to Muhyi'd-dln 
Ibn al-'Arabl. 

shirk: the unforgiveable wrong action of worshipping something or 
someone other than Allah or associating something or someone as a 
partner with Him. 

shuhud: contemplative vision, inner witnessing. 

shukr: gratitude, giving thanks and acknowledgement of blessing. It 
begins with the tongue, then with the body and then with the heart. 

shurb: "drinking", tasting the sweetness of devotion which increases the 
meaning and decreases the sensory. It is more permanent than "tast- 
ing" (dhawq). 

shurtid: seeking restlessly to escape from the veils of this world, 
employing every resource to become unveiled, 

shuyukh: plural of shaykh. 

siddiq: a man of truth, the siddiq is the one who believes in Allah and 
His Messenger by the statement of the one who reports it, not from 
any proof except the light of belief which he experiences in his 
heart, and which prevents him from hesitating, or any doubt entering 
him, about the word of the Messenger who reported. 

sidq: truthfulness. 

sifat: the attributes, of Allah. 

silsila: the chain, in Sufism, the continuity of spiritual descent and trans- 
mission of wisdom from shaykh to shaykh from the Prophet. 

simsima: "sesame seed", a metaphor for gnosis which is too fine to 

sirr: inmost consciousness, the secret. 

subha (plural subuhat): prayer beads. (See tasblh). 

suhba: companionship, company. 

sukr: intoxication, drunkenness, rapture, 

sukun: stillness, the heart at peace, a serenity born of emptiness. 

suluk: journeying, the progress on the Way to Allah, maintaining out- 
ward stability while inwardly attracted to the Divine (jadhb). 



tabaddul: "tabaddul al-'alarn ma' al-anfus", the transforaiation of the 
world with each breath, meaning that at every single moment, the 
entire universe emerges anew. This is similar to the expression 
"tajdid al-khalq" or "renewal of creation", in which the universe is 
created anew in every instant. (See nafas ar-Rahmari). 

tafakkur: pondering, reflection. 

tat rid: inward solitude, isolation, the experience of tawhid rather than 
simple knowledge of it. 

tafriqa: Seefarq. 

tafwld: handing over management of one's affairs to Allah, realising 
that one is not really in charge, similar to isqat at-tadbir. 

tahakkum: a ruling control over some things given to some people 
through the force of their himma. 

tahalli: imitation of praiseworthy people in word and deed. 

tahqiq: realisation, when someone sees the face of Allah in everything 
and gives everything its rightful due (haqq). 

Ta'ifa (plural tawa'if): a group of pupils with a shaykh. 

tajalll: self-manifestation, prescencing, self-disclosing, the unveiling of 
a spiritual reality in the realm of vision, a showing forth of the 
secrets of the One in existence. 

tajdid al-khalq: the renewal of creation at every instant, (See tabaddul), 

tajrid: disengagement, outward separation, stripping away, pure detach- 
ment from the world, abandoning the desires and things of this 
world and being unconcerned with the rewards of the Next World. 

takhalli: relinquishment, turning away from distractions which prevent 
a person from reaching his Goal. 

takhlis: cleansing one's soul of relations with anything other than Allah. 

takiyya: place of religious retreat, sanctuary. In Turkish, it becomes 
tekke or durgah. 

talaqql: receiving and taking what comes to you from Allah, 

talbis: the appearance of a thing when its appearance is contrary to its 
reality, as in the Qur'an (6:9). The good can conceal the bad or vice 

talib: a seeker of Allah. 

talwin: change and turning from one state to another. 



tamkin: fixity, the state of the people of trial. It is the removal of talwin. 
All that is other than Allah has been removed from his mind and so 
he does not vacillate. 

tarns: negation of a substance of which some trace is left. 

tanazzulat: descensions, the gradual descent of illumination; instances 
of "descents" of the One essence into a manifestation within the sen- 
sible world. Amazingly this descent both reveals and hides the One 

tanzih: transcendence, disconnecting Allah from creation. The opposite 
of tashbth. There are three categories of disconnection: the tanzih of 
the Shari'a, which the common understand as disconnecting part- 
ners from divinity; the tanzih of the intellect, which the elite under- 
stand is to disconnect the Real from being described by possibility; 
the tanzih of unveiling which is to contemplate the presence of the 
absolute Essence. 

taqallub: the constant change and transformation of the heart. 

taqrlb: drawing near, one of the attributes of things in-time because they 
accept drawing-near and its opposite. The Real is the "Near". 

taqwa: awe or fear of Allah, which inspires a person to be on guard 
against wrong action and eager for actions which please Him. 

taraqql: rising through states, stations and knowledges. 

Tariqa: the Way, the Path. 

tark at-tark: "quitting quitting", complete surrender, forgetting every- 
thing. The struggle is not to struggle. 

tasarraf : free disposal, personal initiative. Ibn 'Arab! says it is the con- 
trol exerted by the himma to effect changes in the external world. 

fasawwuf: Sufism, the science of the journey to the King. 

tasbih: glorification; also prayer beads. 

tashblh: the recognition that although nothing can be associated with 
Allah, nevertheless Allah participates in the world of forms, e.g. see- 
ing is His and hearing is His. 

tawadu*: humility. 

tawajjuhat: unceasing Divine favours, the fundamental premise that 
Divine knowledges are renewed constantly, and while the forms 
appear the same, in fact they are renewed in every instant. 

tawajud: simulated ecstasy - to be avoided. 



tawakkul: reliance, unshakeable trust in Allah, the final stage of which 
is to be like the corpse in the hands of the washer. It is trusting abso- 
lutely that Allah will be just and merciful and provide for His ser- 

tawali': the appearance of the splendours of knowledge of tawhid in the 
heart which are so intense that they obliterate any other knowledge. 

tawaqqu 4 ; anticipation. What man anticipates has appeared because 
whenever he anticipates something it has already manifested itself in 
him inwardly. Whatever appears inwardly manifests in the outward. 

tawba: returning to correct action after error, turning away from wrong 
action to Allah and asking His forgiveness. 

tawhid: the doctrine of Divine Unity, Unity in its most profound sense. 

tawfiq: success given by Allah. 

ta'wH: allegorical interpretation. 

tekke: Turkish zawiya. 

turuq: the plural of tarlqa. 

'ubuda: sheer devotion, seeing yourself by your Lord. 

*ubudfya: slavehood, obedience is illuminated by the recognition that 
one is the slave of the Lord. 

*ud: aloes wood, often burned for its fragrant scent during gatherings of 

uns: intimacy, a state in which contemplation of Allah's beauty predom- 
inates. The opposite of hayba, 

Uwaysi: one who obtains illumination without being a follower of a 
spiritual teacher. The name is taken from Uways al-Qarani, a gnostic 
and contemporary of the Prophet who did not meet him, although 
they knew of each other. 

*uzla: withdrawal after khalwa to fix the fruits of khalwa. It is less strict 
than khalwa. Withdrawal is to withdraw from every blameworthy 
attribute and every base character in his state. In his heart, he with- 
draws from connection to any of Allah's creation. 

wahdaniya: Oneness, the Unity of the Divine Names, 

wahdat ash-shuhud: unity of consciousness, unity of direct witnessing. 

wahdat al-wujud: unity of being. There is only one Self which is mani- 
fested in multiplicity. Allah is One in His DhaU His Sijat and His 



Af'dL There is only One Entity in existence and multiplicity appears 
through relations between non-essential entities, 

wahidiya: the unity of multiplicity. 

wahm: opinion, conjecture, illusion, fantasies arising in the mind which 
are substituted for reality. 

wahsha: loneliness, estrangement from created things. 

wajd: rapture, trance, the first degree of ecstasy. Ibn al-'Arabl states: "It 
is what the heart unexpectedly encounters of its unseen states with- 
drawn from witnessing. 

Wajhu'llah: "the Face of Allah", meaning for the sake of Allah, irre- 
spective of any reward in this life, purely for Allah. 

walad: lit. "child", a beginner on the path, 

walah: unbounded ecstasy, utter distraction, 

wall (plural awliya'): someone who is "friend" of Allah, thus possessing 
the quality of wilaya. 

waqfa: being held between two stations. 

waqi'a: visionary experience, a thought which comes and settles and 
cannot be repelled, 

waqt: lit. time, meaning being in the moment and independent of look- 
ing to the past or the future. Sometimes the Sufi is described as "ibn 
al-waqr (the child of the moment) because of this. 

wara 4 : scrupulousness, it extends from avoidance of the unlawful and 
doubtful to avoiding anything that will cast a shadow on the heart. 
The faqir must also be scrupulous to avoid basking in his scrupu- 

warid: "arriving thing"; an overflowing experience which overcomes a 
person's heart. It is the first oncoming of gatheredness (jam'). 

wasa*it: secondary causes to which seekers of Allah attach themselves 
and thereby gain the object of their desire. 

wash union. 

wasm: a marking or a stamp. In Ibn al- 'Arabics terminology, a quality 
which continues from before-time on into after-time. 

waswas: the whispering of Shaytan when he tries to make people devi- 

watad: singular of awtad. 



wazifa: specific set of prayers which are recited. 

wijdan: the second degree of ecstasy (after wajd), Ibn 'Ajiba says that it 
is when the sweetness of witnessing lasts, usually accompanied by 
drunkenness and bewilderment. 

wilaya: friendship, in particular with Allah, referring to the walVs sta- 
tion of knowledge of the Real by direct seeing. 

wird (plural awrdd): a regular spiritual exercise involving recitation of a 
litany of dhikr, 

wujud: "existence". Dhat al-wujud is "existence itself in its absolute 
and unqualified purity. In relation to Allah, Dhat Allah is the 
Essence of Allah before being described in any manner whatsoever. 
This is unknowable and unknown (Ghayb) and absolutely One. In 
relation to mystical stations, wujiid is the third degree of ecstasy in 
which awareness dominates the sense of bewilderment and so the 
one experiencing it seeks to conceal it. Ibn al-*Arabi said, "Wujud 
(finding) is experiencing the Real in wajd (ecstasy)." 

wusul: arrival, attainment. 

yaqln: absolute unshakeable certainty and certitude; Him al-yaqin 
(knowledge of certainty) is given by proof or evidence; 'ayn al- 
yaqin (source or eye of certainty) is given by witnessing and unveil- 
ing; and haqq al-yaqin (the truth of yaqin) is knowledge obtained 
according to what the Witnessed so wills. 

zahid: someone whose heart has no inclination or attachment for this 

zaman: linear time. 

zann; opinion, supposition. 

zawa'id: abundance of lights of spiritual illumination in the heart. 

zawlya: a "corner", small mosque, or religious retreat, often where the 
shaykh teaches. 

ziyara: visit to tomb or holy places. 

zuhd: making do with little of this of world and leaving what you do not 

zuhhad: plural of zahid. 


Some major Tariqas 

Ahmadiya: tariqa in Egypt from Ahmad al-Badawi 5 the famous 
Egyptian Sufi (d. 675/1276). It is also called the Badawiya. It has 
numerous branches, but is confined to Egypt. Its members wear a 
red turban. It was popular among the Mamluks, and has several sub- 
branches. (Not to be confused with the sect bearing the same name, 
also known as the Qadianis, who by declaring their leader, Mirza 
Ghulam Ahmad (d. 1326/1908) to be a prophet have been declared 
kdfirun by the Sunni 'ulama ',) 

'Alawfya: Algerian branch of the Darqawa since 1919. 

Bektashi: Sufi order, popular among Ottoman janissaries, founded by 
Hajji Bektash Wall of Khorasan (d, 739/1338), Somewhat eclectic, 
with strong Shi'ite tendencies. 

Burhanlya: Egyptian tariqa y a branch of the Shadhili tariqa. 

Chistiya: an Indian Sufi tariqa from Shaykh Chisti (d. 632/1236). 
Chisht is the village in which the founder of the order, Abu Ishaq of 
Syria, settled. They utilise songs and music and wear cinnamon 
coloured garments. 

Darqawa: also Darqawlya (or Derqawiya) a branch of the Shadhili 
tariqa originating with Mulay al-'Arabi ad-DarqawI (d. 1289/1823), 
or more properly, with the teachings of his shaykh, Sidi 'All al- 
Jamal (d. 1193-94/1779-80). It concentrates on renunciation of 
worldly things and a return to the true teachings of tasawwuf. It has 
various branches, mainly in northwest Africa. They played a politi- 
cal role in opposition to the Turks and later the French. 

Halvetiyye: See Khalwatiya. 

Harraqfya: Moroccan branch of the Darqawa since the 19th century, 
who have kept the old Andalusian tradition of music alive. 

'Isawiya: a popular tariqa who charm snakes and perform prodiguous 
feats. Based at Meknes in Morocco. 



Jarrahiya: a Turkish tariqa founded by Shaykh Nur ad-Din Muhammad 
al-Jarrah of Istanbul (d. 1 183/1720). 

Jazullya: Moroccan reformed Shadhili tariqa. It has various branches, 
including the Darqawa. 

Khalwatiya: a tariqa which is known as the Halvetiyye in Turkish. It 
was founded by Shaykh 'Umar al-Khalwatl (d. 800/1397) and is 
based on hunger, silence, vigil, seclusion and dhikr. It has many 

Kubrawiya: a KhorasanI branch of the the old Junaydlya tariqa from 
Najm Kubra (d. 619/1221). It has several branches. They developed 
an elaborate colour-symbolism: white represents Islam, yellow faith, 
dark blue ihsan, and so forth. They became important in Kashmir. 

Mevlevlya: or the Mawlawlya, Sufi order in Turkey founded by Jalal ad- 
Din RumI (d. 672/1273). They are known in the West as the 
"whirling dervishes" because of their central practice of turning 
which is done to the accompaniment of music. Their centre is in 
Qonya, Turkey. 

Naqshbandlya: an order founded by Muhammad Naqshband (d. 
791/1389), characterised by silence for recollection and concentra- 
tion and the dhikr of the heart. Ahmad Sirhindl (d. 1034/1624) was a 
member of this order. The Naqshbanlya tariqa is the only tariqa 
whose silsila traces back to the Prophet through the first khalif Abu 
Bakr. The other tariqas all trace back to the Prophet through the 
fourth khalif 'AH. 

Ni'matullahlya: a Shi'ite Sufi order founded by Shah Wall Ni'matullah 
(d. 840/1431). 

Nurbakhshlya: Khorasan branch of the Kubrawiya named after 
Muhammad ibn Muhammad called Nurbakhsh (d. 869/1465). 

Qadiriya: the first tariqa, founded by 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilani (d. 
561/1 166). It is very active and very widespread. 

Rah manly a: Algerian tariqa named after Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'r- 
Rahman al-Gushtuli al-Jurjuri who died in 1208/1793-94 in Kabylia. 
It is a branch of the Khalwatiya and was once called the Bakrlya. In 
some places it is called the 'Azzviziya. 

Rifa J iyya: a tariqa which originated from Basra and has several branch- 
es. Known in the West as the "howling dervishes". It was an off- 



shoot of the Qadiriya established by Ahmad ar-Rifa'i (d. 578/1187). 
They developed strange and extreme practices, including the dawsa. 

Salimiya: tariqa named after Ibn Salim whose shaykh was Sahl at- 
Tustarl (d. 282/896). 

Sanusiya: political-religious organisation founded in Libya by Sayyid 
Muhammad 'AH as-SanusI (d. 1276/1859), who put up strong resis- 
tance to the colonialists. 

Shad hilly a: order founded by Abu Madyan of Tlemcen (d, 594/1197) 
and Abu'l-Hasan ash-Shadhili of Tunis (d. 656/1258). Ash-Shadhili 
discouraged monasticism and urged his followers to maintain their 
ordinary lives, a tradition still followed. It manifests the sobriety 
which al-Junayd espoused. It has many branches, especially in 
North Africa. 

Shattariya: an Indonesian tariqa from 'Abdullah Shattar (d. 824/1415 
or 837/1428). 

Suhrawardlya: Baghdad! order founded by 'Abdu'l-Qadir as-Suhrawar- 
di (d. 564/1 168), a disciple of Ahmad al-Ghazali (the younger broth- 
er of Muhammad al-Ghazali), and Abu Hafs 'Umar as-Suhrawardl 
(d. 632/1234). It has several branches. The ' Abbasid khalif an-Nasir 
helped in the diffusion of his teaching and his futuwwa order. 

Tijamya: a widespread tariqa in the Maghrib founded by Abu'l-* Abbas 
Ahmad at-Tijani (d. 1230/1815) in Fes. He said that he received the 
command to found the tariqa in a vision of the Prophet. They are 
exclusivist, not allowing people to join any other tariqa, and advo- 
cate complete submission to the government, whatever it is. 


Some Famous Sufi Texts 

'Awarif aI-Ma*arif: "the Gifts of Gnoses", by Abu Hafs 'Umar as- 
Suhrawardi (540/1145 - 632/1234), a treatise on Sufic teaching 
which was widely read and became a standard text in Indian 

Dala'il al-Khayrat: "Guides to Good Things", a popular collection of 
prayers on the Prophet with emphasis on the Divine Names, by al- 
Jazull (d. 870/1465). 

Al-Fath ar-Rabbam: "Sublime Revelation", a series of discourses by 
Shaykh 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilanl (d. 561/1166). 

Fusus al-Hikam: "The Seals of Wisdom", an extremely Important book 
regarded as the nucleus of Ibn al-'Arabi's teaching and philosophy: 
it consists of a series of explanations of the mystical meanings of the 
particular gnoses granted to each of several major Prophets. 

Futuh al-Ghayb: "Openings of the Unseen", a series of discourses on 
the Sufic Path by Shaykh 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilani (d. 561/1 166). 

Futuhat al-Makkiya: "The Makkan Revelations", Ibn 'Arabfs huge 
major work which consists of 565 chapters. He was inspired to 
begin it, hence its name. 

Hikam: "The Wisdoms", by Ibn 'Ata'llah, a Shadhill and Maliki faqih. 
It is a collection of 262 aphorisms followed by four short treatises 
and some supplications. 

Hilyat al-Awliya': "The Embellishment of the Saints", a compendium 
of Sufic doctrine and biographies by Abu Nu'aym al-Isfaham (d. 

Hizb al-Bahr, Hizb al-Barr and Hizb an-Nasr: the famous collections 
of prayers of Shaykh ash-Shadhili (d. 656/1258). 

Ihya' 'Ulum ad-DIn: "The Revivification of the Sciences of Religion", 
a famous book by al-Ghazali (d. 505/1111), written over a number 
of years after he left Baghdad in 488/1095 to become a wandering 
Sufi. In it, he proposes to radically overhaul the current attitude 
towards religion by putting fear of Allah at the centre of all actions. 



al-Insan al-Kamil: a treatise by al-JUl (d. 811-20/1408-17), on the 
"Universal Man'*. He attempts to systematise the teachings of Ibn al- 
*ArabI, but not always agreeing with him. He discusses the different 
levels of divine manifestations. 

Kashf al-Mahjub: "The Lifting of the Veil", the oldest Persian treatise 
on Sufism, translated by R.A. Nicholson. Al-Hujwirl (d. c. 
467/1075) wrote it as a reply to certain questions put to him and to 
set forth a complete overview of Sufism. 

Khamriyya: "The Wine Ode" by Ibn al-Farid (d. 632/1235), a very 
famous ode in which wine is a symbol of divine knowledge. 

Khatm al-Awliya': "The Seal of the Saints", by al-Haklm at-Tirmidhi 
(d. 320/931), in which he developed the terminology which has been 
used ever since: the Qutb, the Ghawth and the hierarchy of four, 
seven, forty, and three hundred based upon their relative levels of 

Kitab al-Luma*: "Book of Lights", by Abu Nasr as-Sarraj (d. 378/988), 
one of the earliest Sufi manuals. He sets forth the principles of 
Sufism and shows how they agree with the Qur'an and Sunna. 

Mantiq at-Tayr: "The Conference of the Birds", a classic epic poem 
written by 'Attar (d. 638/1230) which tells of a conference attended 
by all types of birds, who pose a series of questions to their leader, 
the hoopoe. It is an allegory of the soul's journey to union with 

Mathnawi: Rumi's (d. 672/1273) six volume epic didactic poem and 
undisputed masterpiece on the teachings of Sufism. 

al-Mawaqif wa'l-Mukhatabat: "Spiritual Stagings and Addresses", by 
an-Niffarl (d. 354/965), a description of various stations through 
which the salik passes, translated by A.J. Arberry. 

MIftah al-Falah: "The Key to Success" by Ibn 'Ata'llah al-Iskandarf (d. 
709/1309), a work on dhikr, its meanings, techniques, and benefits. 

al-Munqidh min ad-Dalal: "The Deliverer from Error", a book by al- 
Ghazall (d. 505/1111), in which he gives a detailed acount of his 
intellectual and religious struggles which culminated in his becom- 
ing a Sufi. 

Nafahat al-Uns: by Jam! (d. 898/1492), an account of the Sufis of the 
Naqshbandlya of the fifteenth century and a summary of Sufi 


Qut al-Qulub 

Qut al-Qulub: "The Nourishment of Hearts in dealing with the Beloved 
and the Description of the Seeker's Way to the Station of declaring 
Oneness", a famous early work on Sufism by Abu Talib al-Makld 
(d. 386/998-9). In its style and arrangement, it is a precursor to al- 
GhazalT slhyd' 'Ulumad-DTn. 

Risala: "The Treatise", by al-Qushayri (d. 465/1074), basically a col- 
lection of sayings, anecdotes and definitions presented in a some- 
what formal method. It is one of the early complete manuals of the 
science of Sufism. 

as-Salat al-Mashishiya: the poem in praise of the Prophet composed by 
Ibn Mashish (d. c. 625/1228) which is frequently recited. 

Ta'arruf: "Defining the School of the People of Self-purification", a 
book by al-Kalabadhl (d. 390/1000), translated as Doctrine of the 
Sufis. This book played a great role in winning recognition of 
Sufism within Islam. In this sense, he was a precursor of al-GhazalL 

Tabaqat as-Sufiyya: "Biographies of the Sufis", 'Abdu'r-Rahman as- 
Sulami's (d. 412/1021) biographical account of the Sufis. 

Tadhkirat al-Awliya r : "Memorial of the Saints", by 'Attar (d. 
638/1230), a collection of the biographies of the saints. 

Tarjuman al-Ashwaq: "Translator of Yearnings", a collection of poetry 
by Ibn al-'Arabl (d. 638/1240). 


Some Famous Sufis 

'Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak: one of the scholars and Imams. His mother 
was from Khwarizm and his father was Turkish. He was from Marw 
and was born in 118/736. He was a man with knowledge of hadlth, 
fiqh, literature, grammar, language, and poetry. He was eloquent, 
ascetic, and scrupulous. He spent the night in prayer and worship, 
and went on hajj and military expeditions. He wrote many books 
and was the first to produce a book on jihad. He died in Hit, Iraq, in 
181/797 after a battle with the Byzantines. 

'Abdu'l-GhanI ibn Isma*il an-Nabiilisi: born in Damascus in 
1050/1641. A prolific Hanafi Imam, mufti, poet, Sufi and author of 
nearly 500 books, especially Idah al-Maqsud min Wahdat al-Wujud 
(explaining what the Sufis mean by 'wahdat al-wujud' (the oneness 
of being)). He wrote commentaries on Ibn al-'Arab! and Ibn al- 
Farid. He died in 1143/1733. 

^Abdu'l-Karlm al-JIli: ibn Ibrahim, the Sufi Qutb of Jilan, (b. 
767/1365-6). A great grandson of 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilanl. He was a 
Sufi, gnostic and scholar who wrote many books, especially al- 
Insan al-Kamil {"The Universal Man"). He followed the teachings 
of Ibn al-'Arabl. He died in about 81 1-20/1408-17. 

'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilani: Muhyi'd-dln Abu Muhammad, preacher and 
Sufi, the founder of the Qadiriya, known as the spiritual pole of his 
time, al-Ghawth cd-A'iam. He was born in 470/1077-8 in the city of 
Jilan, in the northwestern province of Persia, and died in 561/1166. 
At the age of eighteen he went to Baghdad to study the various sci- 
ences, including Hanbali and Shaft 'I fiqh. He turned to Sufism 
through Shaykh al-Mubarak Sa'id, the shaykh of most of the Sufis 
of Baghdad, He received the ijdza and leadership of the tarfqa at the 
age of fifty. His most famous books are: al-Ghunya li Talibi Tafiq 
al-Haqq (a summary of the Hanbali school); al-Fath ar-Rabbam; 
and Futuh al-Ghayb. He had a ribat outside the Halba gate in 
Baghdad where he taught. 



'Abdu'l- Wahid ibn Zayd: mystic, who died in 177/793-4. He knew al- 
Hasan al-Basri and others. He spent forty years praying Subh with 
the wudu' of 'Isha". He was much attached to solitude. He was par- 
tially paralysed, an affliction which left him when he prayed. 

Abu 'All ad-Daqqaq: the Imam of the Sufis of his time and the shaykh 
of Abu'l-Qasim al-QushayrL Originally from Nishapur, he studied 
there, after which he travelled to Marw, where he studied Shaft 'I 
fiqh. He died in 405/1014 

Abu Madyan: Shu'ayb ibn al-Husayn al-Ansan, (520/1126 - 594/1198), 
an Andalusian who later taught in Bougie. He was born near Seville 
and is buried in the village of al-'Ubbad, outside Tlemcen. He was 
the Qutb, al-Ghawth, of his time. He met *Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilam 
while on hajj. He is credited with the introduction of the Qadiriya 
into the Maghrib. He is known as Sidi Boumedienne in Algeria. 

Abu Sa'id al-Kharraz: Ahmad ibn isa, a Sufi and author of Kitab as- 
Sidq, (d, c. 286/899). Al-Hujwiri says that he was the first to explain 
the doctrine offana" (annihilation) and baqa* (going on). He was 
also known for his emphasis on 'ishq (passionate love of Allah) and 
his scrupulous observance of the Sharl'a. 

Abu Talib al-Makkl: Abu Muhammad ibn AH, Shaykh of the Sufis and 
people of the Sunna. He was born in Iraq between Baghdad and 
Wasit. He was a Sufi, Ma\ikifaqTh and scholar. He wrote the Qut al- 
Qulub. He died in Baghdad in 386/998-9. He was the leader of the 
Salimiya in Basra. 

Ahmad al-Badawi: a famous Sufi, said to be descended from 'AH, the 
fourth khalif. He was born in Fez in the Zuqaq al-Hajar in 596/1 199- 
1200, the youngest of eight children. He went to Makka with his 
family while still a child. He knew the seven qira'at. He went to 
Tanta (Tandita) in Egypt and became very ascetic. The founder of 
the Ahmadiya or Badawiya tariqa, he died in 675/1276. 

Ahmad Bamba: (1266/1850 - 1345/1927) His actual name was 
Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Habibullah, the son of a Wolof 
shaykh. Born in M'Backe, Senegal, he was the founder of the 
Muridiya tariqa in Senegal, a sub-group of the Qadiriyya, Although 
he was a zahid, he was persecuted by the French as a possible threat 
because of his popularity. He founded the village of Touba in Baol 
for his followers, where they cultivated peanuts. In 1895, he was 



exiled to Gabon for seven years. He was exiled a second time to 
Mauritania where he remained until 1325/1907. 

al-'AIawi: Shaykh Abu'l- 'Abbas Ahmad ibn Mustafa ibn *Aliwa, born 
in Mostaghanem, Algeria in 1291/1874, he was also known as Ibn 
'Aliwa. He was a cobbler in his youth. He was a Sufi, Malila schol- 
ar, poet and renewer of the Shadhiliya tarfqa, founding the 'Alawl- 
Darqawl tariqa. His shaykh was al-Buzidl, a Darqawl shaykh. 
Although he could neither read nor write, he dictated several 
remarkable and complex works, including his commentary on al- 
Murshid al-Ma'Tn of Ibn al-'Ashlr, and his Diwan which is still 
widely sung today. He died in 1353/1934. Many think he was a 
mujaddid or renewer. 

al-Ansari: Abu Isma'Il 'Abdullah, (396/1006 - 482/1089), a Sufi schol- 
ar and mutakallim. He was first a Shafi'I and then a Hanball. In 
Persian, he is called Pfr-i-Ansar. He was born near Herat. He wrote 
Mundjdt, Tabaqdt as-Sufiyya, Manazil as-Sa'irin, and other books. 
He wrote in Persian in rhyming prose interspersed with verses. 

'Attar, Farid ad-Din: (d. 638/1230), Persian Sufi, author of Tadhkirat 
al-Awliyd r and Conference of the Birds. He was a born storyteller. 
He died in Nishapur, possibly killed in the Mongol invasion. 

Bishr ibn al-IIarith: Abu Nasr ibn al-Harith al-Hafi, born near Marw in 
about 150/767 and converted from a life of dissipation. He studied 
hadlih in Baghdad and then became a mendicant, dying in Baghdad 
in 227/841. He was much admired by Ahmad ibn Hanbal. 

al-Bistaml: Abu Yazld Tayfur ibn 'Isa, known as Bayazid al-Bistami. 
He was a famous Sufi who was born in Bistam in 188/804. His 
grandfather was a Zoroastrian. Bayazid made a detailed study of the 
SharVa and practiced self-denial (zuhd). Throughout his life he was 
assiduous in the practice of his religious obligations and in observ- 
ing voluntary worship. Many Muslim scholars both in his time and 
after his time, said that Bayazid al-Bistaml was the first to spread 
the reality of annihilation (fand'). He is famous for his ecstatic 
expressions. He died in in 260/874 at the age of 71, either in 
Damascus or Bistam, Persia. 

al-BusIrl: a Berber born in Cairo, (610/1213 - 695/1296). He was a dis- 
ciple of ash-Shadhill and al-Mursi. He was suffering from paralysis 
when he dreamt that the Prophet put his mantle on him and he 



awoke cured and wrote al-Burda, the famous poem in praise of the 

ChistI: Mu'In ad-din Muhammad, founder of the Sufi order, the 
Chistiya. He was from Sistan and was born in 537/1142 and lived in 
various towns. After going on hajj and during his ziyara at Madina, 
he was asked to establish Islam in India. After a forty day khalwa 
next to al-Huj win's tomb in Lahore, he went to Delhi in 589/1193 
and then directly to Ajmir where he died in 632/1236. Also known 
as Gharlb Nawaz, "the friend of the poor", some historical accounts 
state that forty thousand families accepted Islam at his hand. 

ad-Daqqaq: See Abu 'All ad-Daqqdq. 

ad-Dardir: Abii'l-Barakat Ahmad b. Muhammad al-'Adawi al-Malikl, 
who died in 1201/1786-7. He wrote ash-Sharh as-Saghir 'ala Aqrab 

ad-DarqawI: Mulay al-'Arabi, (1150/1737 - 1239/1823), the nineteenth 
century mujaddid or renewer of Sufism in the Maghrib. He was con- 
sidered to be the Qutb. He was the founder of the DarqawT branch of 
the Shadhiliya. His Letters to his disciples contain rules of conduct, 
instructions and core teachings of the tariqa, elucidating and simpli- 
fying the teachings of his shaykh, Sidl 'AH al-Jamal (d. 1193- 

Dasuql: See ad-Dusitqi. 

Dhu'n-Nun al-Misri: the ascetic and gnostic of Allah, Abu'1-Fayd 
Thawban ibn Ibrahim, a man of knowledge and virtue. Of Nubian 
origin, he was born at Akhmin in Upper Egypt, in about 180/796, 
studied under several teachers and travelled extensively through 
Arabia and Syria. In 214/829 Al-Mutawakkil accused him of zan- 
daqa but having listened to him, released him. He is said to be the 
first to have given a systematic explanation of the states (ahwal) and 
stations (maqamaf) on the spiritual path. He died in Giza in 245/859. 

ad-Dusnqi: Shams ad-din Muhammad b. Ahmad al-Malikl, (d, 
1230/1815). He wrote a gloss {hashiya) on Ahmad ad-Dardir's 

Fudayl ibn *Iyad: Abu 'All at-Talaqani, born in Khorasan. He was a 
highwayman at the beginning of his life. Then he repented and went 
to Makka and then to Kufa where he resided for many years, dying 



in 187/803. He had a reputation as an authority in hadlth which he 
studied under Sufyan ath-Thawrl and Abu Hanifa and was bold in 
preaching before Harun ar-Rashid. He likened this world to a mad- 

al-Ghazali: (also written al-Ghazzall) Muhammad ibn Muhammad, Abu 
Hamid at-Tusi, the Shafi'I Imam and Sufi born in Tabiran, near Tus 
in 450/1058. He studied fiqh with al-Juwayni. He taught at the 
Nizamiyya Madrasa before he became a Sufi, pointing out that all 
religious certainty was a result of spiritual experience. He is nick- 
named "Shafi'I the Second". He died in Tabiran in 505/1111. He 
was the author of many books, especially Ihyd' 'Ulum ad-Din. 

Hablb ibn Muhammad al-'Ajami: al-Basri, a Persian settled in Basra, 
a muhaddith who transmitted from Hasan al-Basri, Ibn Sinn and 
others. He converted from a life of ease and self-indulgence to a life 
of self-denial. 

Hafiz: (c. 720/1320 - 793/1391), Hafiz was the poetic nom-de-plume of 
Shams ad-din Muhammad. He was born in Shiraz, Persia. As a the- 
ologian he preached tolerance, and as a poet he produced over 700 
poems collected in his Divan. Hafiz' s poems are considered the 
supreme example of the Persian ghazal. 

al-Hakim at-Tirmidhi: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn 'All, originally 
from Tirmidh, a Sufi and Shafi'I scholar. He was exiled from 
Tirmidh on account of a book he wrote and went to Balkh (now 
Wazirabad) where he was welcomed. He died there at the age of 90 
in around 320/931. His major work was the Kitab Khatm al-Awliya\ 
He discusses things like the light of Muhammad, the Reality of 
Adam, the symbolism of the Arabic letters and angels. 

al-Hallaj: Husayn ibn Mansur, Abu'l-Mughlth, born in about 244/858 
near al-Bayda' in Fars, but raised in Wasit in Iraq. He left a Diwan 
and the Tawasin. He was executed in Baghdad in 309/922 because 
his ecstatic outbursts led people to believe that he was a heretic, 

al-Harith ibn Asad al-Muhasibf: born in 165/781. He was called al- 
Muhasibi because he frequently called himself to account 
(muhasaba) and because of his asceticism. He was an excellent 
scholar, held in high esteem among the people of his time in both 
outward and inward knowledge, and wrote many books. His father 


al-Hasan al-Basn 

died leaving him a great deal of wealth, but he refused to take any of 
it because his father had been a Qadari. He died in 243/857. 

al -Hasan al-Basri: Abu Sa'Id ibn Abu'l-Hasan, one of the most emi- 
nent of the Tabi'un in asceticism and knowledge. He was born in 
Madina in 21/642, the son of a slave captured in Maysan who 
became a mawld of the Prophet's secretary, Zayd ibn Thabit. He was 
brought up in Basra. He went for thirty years without laughing: He 
met many Companions and transmitted many hadiths. His mother 
served Umm Salama, the wife of the Prophet. He died in Basra in 
110/728 when he was 88. 

al-Hujwiri: Abu'l-Hasan 'All ibn 'Uthman al-Jullabi, the Sufi, (d. c. 
467/1075). Known also as Data Ganj Bakhsh ("the Bestower of 
Treasures"), he was author of Kashf al-Mahjub t the first Persian 
treatise on Sufism. He was a native of Ghazna, Afghanistan. He 
travelled extensively but little of his life is known. He ended his 
days in Lahore where he is buried. 

Ibn 'Abbad ar-Rundt: a famous Shadhili Sufi, one of al-Maqqari's dis- 
ciples, he wrote a commentary on the Hikam of Ibn 'Ata'llah which 
made it widely known throughout the western Muslim lands. He 
was born in Ronda in 734/1332, studied in Tlemcen and Fez and 
eventually became Imam of the Qarawiyfn madrasa in Fes. He died 
in 793/1390. 

Ibn Abi Dunya: a Sufi in Baghdad, (d. 281/894). He had a book entitled 
Dhamm ad-Dunya ("Censuring this world"). 

Ibn 'Ajiba: Ahmad ibn Muhammad, born in Morocco in 1160/1747, a 
MalikI scholar, Sufi and mufassir {al-Bahr al-Madid), one of the 
Shadhiliya tariqa, which he took from ad-Darqawi by way of 
Muhammad Buzaydi. He wrote seventeen commentaries on the 
Hikam. He died in 'Anjara, Morocco in 1224/1809. 

Ibn al-'Arabi: Muhammad ibn 'AIT, Abu Bakr al-Hatim! at-Ta'i, born 
in Murcia in 560/1 165, a mujtahid, scholar and Sufi. He is known as 
Muhyiddln (the Reviver of the Din) and the Shaykh al-Akbar (the 
Greatest Master). He died in Damascus in 638/1240 with a copy of 
Ihya" 'UlUrn ad-DTn on his lap. He wrote over 350 works including 
the Futuhat al-Makkiyya and the Fusus al-Hikam. 

Ibn al-'Arlf: the author of Mahasin al-Majalis ("The Attractions of 
Mystical Sessions"), his full name was Abu' 1- 'Abbas Ahmad ibn 



Muhammad. He lived in Almeria, Spain. In this period, under the 
Murabitun, Almeria was the centre of Sufism for the Spanish Sufis. 
He founded a tariqa and 130 towns recognised him as Imam, He 
was arrested fay the jealous qadi of the city and sent in chains to the 
Amir in Marrakesh who promptly set him free. He died a few days 
later, in 536/1141. He was the first to interpret the IhyW 'Ulitm ad- 
Din of al-Ghazali in the West. 

Ibn 'Ata': Abu'l- 'Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Sahl ibn 'Ata' al- 
Adami, a Sufi and companion of Junayd, author of poetry. He was 
put to death in 309/922. 

Ibn 'Ata*llah: Ahmad ibn Muhammad, Taju'd-DIn, Abu Fadl al- 
Iskandari, the Sufi Imam and author of the Hikam, Lata'if al-Minan, 
Miftah al-Falah, and other works, thereby providing the Shadhiliyya 
with their core literature. His shaykh was Abu'l- 'Abbas al-MursI, 
whose shaykh was ash-Shadhili. From Alexandria, he moved to 
Cairo where he died in 709/1309 around the age of sixty. He also 
taught in the al-Azhar and the Mansuriya Madrasa. There was a 
famous debate between him and Ibn Taymiyya in 707/1307, in 
which Ibn 'Ata'llah defended Ibn al-'Arabi. 

Ibn Daqiq al-'Id: Taqiyyuddin Muhammad ibn 'All, born in Yanbu\ a 
Shafi'I, mujtahid, made qadi in Cairo in 695. He has poems in praise 
of Madina. He was born in 625/1228 and died in 702/1302. 

Ibn al-Farid: 'Umar ibn 'AH, the Sufi poet, born in Cairo in 577/1182 
and lived in the Muqattam in Cairo. He died in 632/1235. He is 
known as the "Sultan of the Lovers" and his collection of poems is 
very famous because of the high quality of the poetry. 

Ibn Khaftf: Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Khaftf ibn Isrikshar ash- 
Shirazi, born in 276/890. The son of a prince, he became an ascetic 
Sufi. He was also a Shafi'I scholar. He went on hajj at least six 
times. He died in Shiraz in 371/982 at the age of 95. 

Ibn Mashish: 'Abdu's-Salam, the master of Abu'l-Hasan ash-Shadhili, 
(d. c. 625/1228). He was a Berber and the Qutb of his age. He was a 
recluse who lived on the Jabal 'Alam, a mountain in Morocco. All 
he left was the Salat al-Mashishiya, 

Ibn ul-Mubarak: See 'Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak. 

Ibn al-Qasiy: Abu'l-Qasim, disciple of Ibn al-'Arif, a Sufi who organ- 
ised a religious militia in the Algarve (southern Portugal) based in 


Ibn Salim 

Silves and led an uprising against the ruling class and fuqaha' in the 
Algarve in 536/1141. He had military successes against both the 
Murabitun and the Muwahhidun and ruled the region for ten years. 
He wrote KhaV an-Na l layn. He was killed in 546/1 151. 

Ibn Salim: 'AH al-Basrl, (d. 297/909-10), a disciple of Sahl at-Tustari, 
founder of the Salimiya and the main teacher of Abu Talib al- 

Ibrahim ibn Adham: Abu Ishaq at-Tamimi al-Balkhi, an early Sufi 
zahid and saint. Born into a wealthy family of Balkh, he gave it all 
up to seek knowledge through travel, taking on all sorts of menial 
jobs and fighting in the jihad against the Byzantines. While he was 
in Massisa, a slave brought the news of the death of his father, who 
had left him a fortune. He was carrying 10,000 dirhams. Ibrahim 
freed him and gave him the dirhams, saying that he had no need of 
the rest. He fasted all the time. He attended the gatherings of Sufyan 
ath-Thawri. He died in 161/778, probably at Sufnan on the 
Byzantine frontier. 

Ibrahim al-Khawwas: ibn Ahmad, (d. 290/903), a Sufi author who 
taught al-Khuldl. He lived mostly at Rayy although he studied 

Jaml: Nur'd-dln Abdu'r-Rahman, (d. 898/1492). He wrote Nafahat al- 
Uns and and Lawa'ih ("Flashes"). 

al-Jazuli: (d. 870/1465). He studied fiqh in Fes and went on hajj s 
returned to the Sousse and joined the ShadhilTya. He was a sharif. 
He pursued the classical model of jihad in which he led the attack 
against the Portuguese who had subjected the coastal peoples to trib- 
ute. His tomb is in Marrakesh. He wrote the Dald'il al-Khayrat. 

aWHani: See 'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jilanl 

al-Jili: See 'Abdu 'l-Karim al-Jill 

al-Jullabi: See al-Hujwirl 

al-Junayd: Abu'l-Qasim ibn Muhammad, the shaykh of his time. His 
family originated from Nihawand and he grew up in Iraq. His fiqh 
was taken from Abu Thawr and Sufyan ath-Thawrl. He took his 
tariqa from as-Sari as-Saqati, his uncle, and al-MuhasibL He died in 
297/910. He was one of the Shaft 4 ! fuqaha' and is buried in 
Baghdad. He defined Sufism as "isolating the out-of-time (the eter- 



nal without beginning or end) from what originates in time", or as 

al-Kalabadhl: Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Ishaq, an authority on early 
Sufism who died in Bukhara, probably in 390/1000. He is listed as a 
Hanafi /a^Ffr. Kalabadh was a district of Bukhara. He wrote Kitdb 
at-Ta 'arruf and Bohr al-Fawa 'id, 

al-Kharraz: Abu Sa*Id Ahmad ibn isa of Baghdad, a cobbler by trade. 
He met Dhu'n-Nun al-Misri and associated with Bishr al-Hatl and 
Sari as-SaqatL He was the author of several books, and died between 
279/892 and 286/899. 

Ma' al-'Aynayn al-Qalqami: Muhammad Mustafa ibn Muhammad, 
Abu'l-Anwar, born near Walata in the Hawd of southeastern 
Mauritania in 1247/1831. Of Mauritanian and Moroccan descent, he 
was a Sufi Shaykh of the Qadiri tariqa. He was a prolific writer, a 
well-digger and founder of zdwiyas. He built a zawiya at Smara (in 
the Saqiyat al-Hamra') which had a reputation for Qur'anic studies 
and its large library. It was destroyed by the French. He participated 
in armed resistance against the French during which he lost several 
sons. He died in Tiznit in southern Morocco in 1328/1910. 

al-Maghlll: Abu 'Abdullah, Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'l-Karim at- 
Tilimsani, a Berber Maliki faqlh, (d, 909/1504), involved in the 
spread of the Qadiriyya in the western Sahara at the end of the fif- 
teenth century and a key figure in the infusion of Islam among the 
Tuaregs. He joined the Qadiriya in Cairo through as-Suyutl. He 
lived in Tuwat and went to Gao, to the court of Muhammad Askia 
and thence to other Muslim areas. He taught in Tagedda, Air, Gao 
and Hausaland. 

al-Makkl: See Abu Talib al-Makkl 

Malik ibn Dinar: Abu Yahya an-Naji al-Basri, a Persian mawla, the son 
of a Persian slave from Sijistan or Kabul, a weeper at Basra. He was 
an early Sufi and one of disciples of Hasan al-Basri. He was known 
for piety, self-mortification, tawakkul and learning Israelite stories. 
He was a reliable muhaddith and calligrapher of the Qur'an. He 
never ate anything he had not purchased from payment for making 
copies of the Qur'an. He died in Basra in 131/748. 

Ma'ruf al-Karkhi: Abu Mahfuz ibn Firtiz, a famous Sufi of the 
Baghdad school. Karkh Bajadda is a town in eastern Iraq. His par- 



ents were either Christians or Sabi'ians. He had a great influence on 
as-Sari as-Saqati, whose shaykh he was, and taught hadith to Ibn 
Hanbal. His tomb is in Baghdad. He died in 200/815-6 or 204/ 

al-Muhasabi: See al-Harith ibn Asad al-Muhasabl. 

Muzaffer: Shaykh Muzaffer was born in Istanbul in 1334/1916. His 
father, Hajji Mehmed Effendi of Konya, a scholar and teacher at the 
court of Sultan 'Abdal-Hamid II, died when he was only six. 
Thereafter he was looked after by Shaykh Seyyid Samiyyi Saruhani, 
the leader of the Qadiri, Naqshbandi, Ushaki and Halvetiyye tariqas 
at the time. After learning from several shaykhs, he became the 
leader of the Halvetiyye-Jerrahl tarlqa. Despite the attempts of 
Ataturk and his successors to destroy the Sufis and Islam in Turkey, 
Shaykh Muzaffer continued to teach until his death in 1406/1986. 

an-Nabulisi: See 'Abdu'l-Ghanl ibn Ismd'Tl an-Nabuiisl 

Naqshband: Muhammad ibn Muhammad Baha' ad-DTn al-Bukhari, 
(717/1317 - 791/1389). Born in a village some distance from 

an-Nawawi: Yahya ibn Sharaf, Abu Zakariyya, born in the village of 
Nawa on the Horan Plain of southern Syria in 631/1233. Imam of 
the later Shafi'ites. He wrote many books, including Minhaj at- 
TalibTn, Kitab al-Adhkar, Riyad as-Salihin. He lived very simply. 
After twenty-seven years in Damascus, he returned home and died 
at the age of 44 in 676/1277. 

an-Niffarl: Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'l-Jabbar, an Iraqi Sufi of the 4th/10th 
century. Very little is known about his life. He died probably in 
354/965. He wrote al-Mawaqifwa'l-Mukhatabat. 

NizamI: Abu Yusuf Muhammad Nizam ad-din (535/1141 - 598/1202), 
a Persian poet and mystic, born in Ganja (Kirovabad), who wrote 
Layla and Majnun, which is part of a collection called the Khamsa. 

Nizamu'd-Din Awliya': one of the greatest ChistI Sufi masters of medi- 
aeval India, born in Bada'un in 636/1238. After studying to become 
a qadi t he became the murid and eventually the successor of 
Faridu'd-Dfn Gangi Shakar. Among his close followers was Amir 
Khusrau, the famous poet who developed and perfected the art of 
qawwdli, and who immediately died on the spot when he learned 



that his shaykh had died, in 725/1325. They are buried not far apart 
in Delhi, India. 

Nurbaksh, Muhammad: (795/1393 - 869/1465), a Sufi in Persia who 
was called Nurbaksh (gift of Allah) by his shaykh. He declared him- 
self the Mahdl and Khalif and tried to seize power The taflqa 
descending from him became Shi'ite. 

an-Nuri: Abu'l-Husayn Ahmad ibn Muhammad, a native of Baghdad of 
a Khorasani family, a pupil of Sari as-Saqatl and companion of al- 
Junayd, He wrote some fine poetry and died in 295/90S. 

al-Qushayrl: Abu'l-Qasim 'Abdu'l-Karim ibn Hawazin, the shaykh of 
Khurasan in his time in asceticism and knowledge of the din. He 
was bom in 376/986. He was based at Nishapur and died there in 
465/1074. He has various books, the most famous of which are the 
Risala al-Qushayriya about tasawwuf and the biographies of the 
Sufis, and the Lata'if al-Ishardt on tafslr. In kalam he was the stu- 
dent of the Ash'arite, Abu Bakr ibn Furak, and in Sufism the follow- 
er of as-Sulami, and Abu 'AH ad-Daqqaq whose daughter Fatima he 
married. He battled the Mu'tazilites in Nishapur until he had to flee 
to Makka to protect his life. 

Rabi'a bint Isma'il al-'Adawiyya: sold into slavery as a child after the 
death of her parents, she later settled in Basra where she became 
famous as a saint and preacher. She was born in 95/713-14 and died 
either in 135/752 or in 185/801. She is the most famous woman 
Sufi. She emphasized the importance of selfless love and devotion to 
Allah. She was a contemporary of al-Hasan al-Basri. 

ar-Rifa'I: Abu'l-'Abbas Ahmad ibn 'AH, the founder of the Rifa'i 
tafiqa. He grew up in the area around Basra and eventually estab- 
lished his zawiya in Umm ( AbIda. He died in 578/1182, 

ar-Rumi: Jalal ad-Din Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn 
Husayn, the founder of the MevlevI Sufi order. He was born in 
Balkh (Afghanistan) in 604/1207-08 to a family of learned theolo- 
gians. Escaping the Mongol invasion, he and his family travelled 
extensively in the Muslim lands, performed the pilgrimage to Makka 
and finally settled in Konya, Anatolia (Turkey), where he succeeded 
his father in 629/1231 as professor in religious sciences. He was 
introduced into the mystical path by a wandering dervish, 
Shamsuddin of Tabriz. His love for and his bereavement at the death 


Sahl at-Tustarl 

of Shams found their expression in a surge of music, dance and lyric 
poems, Divani Shamsi TabrTzL Rumi is the author of a huge didactic 
work, The Mathnawi, and his discourses, Fihi ma Fthi, written to 
introduce his disciples to metaphysics. Rumi died on December 17, 
672/1273, Men of five faiths followed his bier. He was a truly uni- 
versal man. 

Sa'di: Muslah ad-Din, a famous poet from Shiraz, Persia {580/1184 - 
692/1292), his shaykh was Shihab ad-Din as-Suhrawardl. He studied 
at the Nizamiya of Baghdad and travelled widely in the Muslim 
world before returning to Shiraz when over seventy. His major 
works are the Bustan, the Gulistan ("Rose Garden"), and his Dlwan. 

Sahl ibn 'Abdullah: ibn Yunus at-Tustarl, famous man of right action, 
unique in knowledge and scrupulousness. He was from Shushtar and 
was bora at Tustar (Ahwaz) in 200/815. A Sufi shaykh and ascetic, 
he also wrote a short tafslr. He had famous miracles (karamdt) and 
kept the company of Dhu'n-Nun al-Misri in Makka. He had to seek 
refuge in Basra, where he died in 282/896. His pupil Ibn Salim 
founded the Salimiya. 

Sana'!: Abu'1-Majd Majdud ibn Adam, bora at Ghazna. He was a Sufi 
poet. Several dates have been given for his death, which was in 
about 545/1150. He wrote the first mystical epic, Hadiqatu'l- 
Haqlqa, a DTwan and other poetical works. 

as-SanusI: Muhammad 'All, Abu 'Abdullah as-SanusT al-Khattabi al- 
Hasani al-Idrlsi, born in Mosteghanem, Algeria in 1202/1789. He 
was the founder of the SanusT tariqa, a Malik! scholar and Sufi 
whose disciples included Shaykh al-'Arabi ad-DarqawI and Ahmad 
Tijani. He produced more than forty books and travelled a lot. His 
main centre was near al-Bayda in Libya. He worked for fifteen years 
to spread Islam south to the African interior. He then went to Makka 
where he remained until 1269/853, and then returned to establish a 
new centre at Jaghbub. He died in 1275/1859. 

Sari as-Saqati: Abu'l-Hasan ibn Mughallis, said to be a pupil of Ma'ruf 
al-Karkhi, in the Baghdad circle of Sufis. He was the maternal uncle 
and teacher of al-Junayd and one of the first to present Suflsm in an 
organised form. A dealer in second-hand goods, he died in 253/867 
at the age of 98, 



as-Sarraj : Abu Nasr 'Abdullah ibn 'AH, author of Kitab al-Luma ', a 
classic Sufi text. He died in 378/988. 

ash-Shadhili: Abu'l-Hasan 'AH ibn 'Abdullah, (593/1196 - 656/1258). 
He was from Ceuta and a disciple of 'Abdu's-Salam ibn Mashlsh. 
He fled from Tunisia and established a following in Egypt, dying 
near the Red Sea on the way to Makka. His successor was Abu'l- 
' Abbas al-MursI (d. 686/1287), the shaykh of Ibn 'Ata'llah (d. 
709/1309). He wrote Hizb al-Bahr, Hizb al-Barr, Hizb an-Nasr, and 
other litanies. 

Shah WalTullah: Qutbu'd-DIn Ahmad, the great Muslim reformer of 
India born in 1114/1702, whose father founded the Rahimiya 
madrasa in Delhi. He memorised the Qur'an by the age of five, 
learned Persian by the age of ten, and was initiated by his father into 
the Qadinya, Chistlya, and Naqshbandiya tariqas. He succeeded his 
father as principal of the Rahimiya at the age of seventeen, and 
taught there throughout his life. He believed that al-Muwatta' of 
Imam Malik was the key to re-establishing Islam in India. He died 
in 1176/1762. I 

Shamil Muhammad ad-Daghestanl: a shaykh who established the 
Naqshbandl tariqa throughout the Caucasus and fought jihad 
against Tsarist Russia for 35 years. His shaykh was Mulla Muham- 
mad al-Ghazi al-Kamrawi whose career began when Russia declared 
protection for the Christians in Khurjistan and then formally 
annexed the region from Safavid Persia in 1215/1800. He recruited 
thousands of Naqshbandis and fought until his death in 1248/1832. 
His successor al-Amlr Hamza al-KhanzajI was martyred the same 
year, when Shamil took over. There followed twenty-seven years of 
jihad against the Russians with many pitched battles, freeing 
Daghestan and seizing their cannon. In 1260/1844 Russia sent a 
larger army who fought for fifteen years until he was captured in 
1276/1859. He was banished to Turkey from where he went to 
Madina and spent the rest of his life worshipping in the Rawda. He 
was buried in al-Baqi*. 

Shamsi Tabriz!: Shamsuddin of Tabriz, the shaykh of Jalal ad-Din 
RumI (d. 672/1273), whose shaykh belonged to the Suhrawardi 
tariqa. The tariqa of Shamsi TabrizI is also known as the Firdawsi 


Shaqiq al-Balkhi 

Shaqiq al-Balkhi: Abu 'All ibn Ibrahim al-Azdl, a man of wide learn- 
ing. He began life as a merchant and turned to zuhd. He went on 
hajj to Makka, and died in jihad in 194/810. He was one of the 
founders of the Khorasani school of Sufism and the disciple of 
Ibrahim ibn Adham. He was a scholar in the Shari'a and known for 
his discourses on the imminence of the Last Day and on tawakkul 
(reliance on Allah). 

ash-Sha'rani: 'Abdu'l-Wahhab ibn Ahmad (848/1492 - 973/1565), 
Egyptian scholar and Sufi who founded a tariqa. He was the author 
of the Tabaqat al-Kubra. 

ash-Shibll: Abu Bakr Dulaf ibn Jahdar, Khorasani of origin, but born in 
Baghdad or Samarra in 247/861, the son of a court official. He was a 
Ma\i)a faqih. Then he joined the circle of Junayd and became noted 
for his eccentric behaviour which led to his commital to an asylum. 
He died in 334/946 at the age of 87. He left his "Sayings" (Ishardt). 
His tomb is in Baghdad. 

Sirhindi: Shaykh Ahmad al-Faruqi, born in about 972/1564 at Sirhind, 
Patiala, India), Indian Sufi and theologian who was largely responsi- 
ble for the reassertion and revival in India of orthodox Sunnite Islam 
as a reaction against the syncretistic religious tendencies prevalent 
during the reign of the Mughal emperor Akbar. He died in 

as-Suhrawardi: Abu Hafs 'Umar, He became Shaykh of Shaykhs in 
Baghdad and acted as ambassador for the 'Abbasid khalif to the 
Ayyubids and Seljuks. He helped with the organisation of the 
futuwwa ideals and an-Nasir may have organised the movement. He 
died in 632/1234. 

as-Sulaml: Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman Muhammad ibn al-Husayn, a shaykh 
of the Sufis and author of a book on their history, ranks and tafslr> 
the Tabaqat as-Suflya. He was born in Nishapur in 325/936 and died 
in 412/1021. ' 

Sufayman al-Khawwas: (d. before 170/787), a zahid of Palestine who 
studied law under al-Awza'I and was a companion of Ibrahim ibn 

at-Tadili: Abu Ya'qub Yusuf ibn Yahya, known as Ibn az-Zayyat, born 
in Tadla (Tadila), Morocco. He spent most of his life in Marrakesh 
and around it. He died in 628-629/1230-31 while qadi of Ragraga. 



He completed at-Tashawwuf ila Rijal at-Tasawwufm 617/1220. It is 
one of the earliest and most important sources for the religious his- 
tory of Morocco. 

at-Tijani: Abu'l-'Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad, founder of the 
Tljaniya. He was born in 1150/1737 at 'Ayn Madi, a village 72 km 
west of Laghuat. He died in 1230/1815 and is buried in Fes, 

at-Tirmidhl: See al-Hakim at-Tirmidhi. 

'Uthman ibn Fudi: or Usuman dan Fodio or Fodiye, born in Maratta, 
Northern Nigeria, in 1167/1754. An Islamic scholar and Qadiri 
Shaykh. He led the Fulani jihad in northern Nigeria with his 
younger brother 'Abdullah! and son Muhammad Bello. He was a 
hafiz of Qur'an, Maliki faqih, poet, and scholar. He was worried 
about the trend to syncretism and so made hijra from the lands of 
the Gobir to the north and west. He fought for four years against the 
Gobir and Habe peoples and died in Sifawa in 1232/1817. 

'Uways al-Barawi: Uways ibn Muhammad, born in Brava on the south- 
ern Somali coast in 1263/1847. He studied Snarl 'i fiqh, tafslr and 
Sufism before going to Baghdad, the centre of the Qadiri tariqa to 
which he belonged. He returned home with ijaza and spread Islam 
in Tanganiyka, southern Somalia and eastern Zaire. He founded 
agricultural settlements at Bilad al-Amin and Biolay, north of Brava, 
and was assassinated in 1326/1909 at the age of 63. 

QadI Waki* ibn al-Jarrah: Abu Sha'ban, a firm hafiz and hadith schol- 
ar of Iraq in his time. He refused the qadlship of Kufa out of scrupu- 
lousness when Hartm ar-Rashid wanted to appoint him to it. He was 
born in 131/748-49 and died in 197/812. He wrote a book entitled 
Kitab az-Zuhd. 

al-Wasiti: Abu Bakr ibn Musa, Imam and gnostic of Allah, and one of 
al-Junayd's companions. He was one of the most esteemed scholars 
and Sufis. He was from the city of Wasit He died in Marw in 

Zarruq, Ahmad: Ahmad ibn Ahmad, AbvTl-* Abbas Zarruq al-Burnusi, 
born in Fez in 846/1442. A Sufi, Maliki scholar and muhaddith who 
studied fiqh in Fez, Cairo and Madina and then became a Sufi and 
withdrew from worldly things and took to wandering. He was a 
renowned Shaykh of the Shadhiliya tariqa. He was considered the 



al-Ghazah of his time. He wrote about thirty commentaries on the 
Hikam of Ibn 'Ata'llah. He died in Takrin, Libya in 899/1493. 


Index of Subjects 

'aba: 3 

abad: 203 

'Abbasids: 32 

'abd: 179, 203 

abdal: 203 

abdan: 143 

'abid: 203 

abiq: 106 

abjad: 179 

abna': 32 

Abu'l-Husayn, Banu: 33 

'Ad: 81 

adab: 66, 73, 106, 203 

'adala: 106 

'adam: 203 

'adat: 131 

Adha: 9 

adhan: 3 

adlb: 3, 66 

adilla: 131 

adilla 'aqllya: 179 


'Adn: 81 

'Adrian: 33 

Adyaf al-lslam: 33 

af al: 203 

afaqi: 179 

afrad: 203 

Aftahlya: 179, 183 

Aftasids: 32 

agha: 33 

Agha Khan: 33 

Aghlabids: 33 

ahad: 203 

ahad (khabar): 97 

ahadith: 97 

ahadiya: 203 


ahkam: 131 

ahkam al-khamsa: 116 


al-ahkam as-sultaniya: 116 


Ahl al-'adl wa't-tawhid: 179 

ahl al-ayyam: 33 

Ahl al-Bayt: 3 

Ahl adh-dhimma: 3 

Ahl al-Hadlth: 3, 97 

ahl al-hall wa'l-'aqd: 3 

Ahl al-Harb: 3 

Ahl al-l'thbat: 179 

Ahl al-Kitab: 3 


Ahl al-Madlna: 3 

ahl al-ma'rifa: 203 

Ahlar-ra'y: 131 

Ahl as-Suffa: 33 

Ahl as-Sufiyya: 3 

Ahlas-Sunnawa'l-Jama'a: 179 

ahliya: 116 

Ahmadiyya: 229 

al-Ahqaf: SI 


ahwal: 203 

Ahzab: 33 

a'imma: 3 

a'immat al-madhahib: 131 

ajal: 143 

'ajami: 3 

'Ajarida: 179 

ajnad: 12, 33 

'ajwa: 4 

al-akabir 'an al-asaghir: 97 

akhbar: 33, 97 

akhbar al-ghayb: 60 

Akhbaris: 33 

akhlaq: 66 

Akhira: 4, 60 

ala: 179 

'alam: 180 

'alam al-ajsam: 180,203 

'alam al-amr: 180,203 


'alam al-arwah 

'alam al-arwah: 180, 203 

'alamal-khalq: 180,204 

'alam al-mithal: 204 

Alastu: 204 

'Alawi: 34 

'Alawites: 34 

'Alawlya: 229 

'alayhi's-salam: 28 

Alaysa': 81 

'all: 97 


'alim4, 180 

Allahu akbar: 28 

Allahu a 'lam: 28 

alqab: 97 

aliya: 180 

ama:4 ■ 

al-'Ama 1 : 180,204 

amal: 66, 204 

'amal: 131 

'amal ahl al-Madlna: 121 

aman: 4 

amana: 66, 143, 204 

amara: 131 

'amil: 34, 143 

amln: 66, 143 


amir: 4 t 34 

'amm: 152 

'amm:73, 131 

'anuna: 4, 152 

amma ba'd: 28 

amr: 4, 131,180,204 

amrbi'l-ma'ruf: 4, 131 

al-amr al-mujtami' 'alayhi: 131 

amthila: 180 

'Amwas: 34 

'anat: 116 


anly a: 180 

Ansar: 34 

'anaza: 4 

'Aqaba: 34 

'aqa'id: 34, 180 

'aqd: 143 

'aqid: 143 

'aqlda: 34, 180 

'aqil: 152, 180 

'aqila: 116 

'Aqlq: 34 

'aqiqa: 116 

'aql: 4 t 152, 180, 204 

aqlab: 73 

al-Aqsa: 34 

'arad: 180,204 

'Arafa: 34, 155 

arak: 4 

ard: 3, 34 

'ard: 34, 97, 143 

ardabb: 26 

( arif: 34, 204 

'ariya: 143 

arkan: 4 

arsh: 116 

'Arsh: 60 

'asaba: 152 

'asablya: 34 

asanid: 97 

asas: 181 

asawira: 35 

asbab: 131, 181 

asbab an-nuzul: 73 

asbab al-wurud: 97 

al-asbab wa'1-wasa'it: 132, 181 

Asbat: 81 

Ashab al-Ayka: 81 

ashab al-fara'id: 152 

Ashab al-Kahf: 81 

Ashab al-Mash'ama: 60 

Ashab al-Maymana: 60 

Ashab ar-Ra'y: 132 

Ashab al-Ukhdud: 81 

al-'Asharaal-Mubashshara: 35 

Ash'arite: 35, 181 

ashbah wa naza'ir: 132 

'ashiq: 204 

'ashir: 143 

'ashira: 35 

ashraf: 35 

'Ashura': 4 


Index of Subjects 

Asiya: 82 

'Askar al-Mahdi: 35 

asl: 132, 152 

al-aslah: 181 

asraa' adh-dhat: 181 

al-Asma* al-Husna: 4 

asma' ar-rijal: 97 

asma T as-sifat: 181 

'Asr: 4 

Assassin: 35 

astaghfiru'llah: 28 

4 ata':4 

athar: 97, 132 

atomism: 181 

a'udhu billah: 28, 73 

Awa'il: 35 

'AwalTl-Madma: 35 

'awamir: 5 

awaq: 26 

'awasim: 35 

'awl:" 152 

awliya' : 204 

awqaf: 116 

'awra: 5 

Aws: 35 

awsaq: 26 

Awtad: 204 

aya(t): 5, 73 

Ayat al-Ahlcam: 73 

Ayat al-KursI: 73 

Ayatal-Mawarith: 152 

Ayat al-Mudayana: 143 

ayat as-sa'a: 61 

Ayat as-Sayf: 73 

Ayatollah: 5 

'ayb: 143 

'ayn: 143, 204 

'ayn al-baslra: 204 

'aynal-jam f :204 

'ayn al-qalb: 204 

al-'ayn ath-thabita: 181, 205 

'ayn al-yaqin: 205 

aynlya: 205 

aysa: 181 

ayyam: 35 

'ayyar: 35 
Ayyub: 82 
azal: 205 
Azar: 82 
Azariqa: 181 
al-Azhar: 36 
'azima: 132 
'aziz: 82, 97 
'Azra'Tl: 60 
'azzawajall: 28 

bab al-abwab: 205 
Bab ar-Rayyan: 60 
Bab-i 'All: 36 
bada': 182 
badana: 155 
badawa: 205 
Badawiya: 229 
badiyya: 5 
badl: 205 
Badr: 36, 43 
Badn: 36 
ba'i: 143 
Bakka: 82 
bakka'un: 36, 205 
balagha: 73, 97 
al-Balat: 36 
baligh: 116 
Banu: 36 
Banu'l-Asfar: 5 
Banu Isra'II: 5 
Banu Tughsh: 36 
Banu 'Ubayd: 39 
al-Baql': 36 
al-bara'a al-asiliya: 1 16 
Barghawata: 36 
baraka: 5, 205 
barakaUah: 28 
band: 28, 36 
Barmakids: 36 
Barqa: 5 
ban: 66 



barzakh: 60, 205 

basira: 66, 205 

basmala: 5, 73 

bast: 205 

batil; 116,143 

batin: 73, 182, 205 

batini: 73, 182,205 

Eatimya: 182 

ba'th: 5, 60 

batOl: 5 

bay': 143 

bay'a: 5, 205 

bayan: 73, 132 

al-Bayda': 36 

Bayram: 5 

Baytu'llah: 155 

Bayt al-Haram: 5, 155 

Bayt al-Hikma: 182 

Bayt al-Mal: 36 

Al-Bayt al-Ma'mur: 60 

Bayt al-Maqdls: 36 

bayyina: 74, 116 

bedug: 6 

BektashI: 229 

bey: 36 

Beylerbey: 37 

bid 'a: 37, 182 

bida'a: 143 

bilakayf: 182 

bi'l-ma^ruf: 152 

Bilqls: 82 

bintlabun: 117 

bint makhad: 1 17 

Binyamin: 82 

birdhawn: 37 

birr: 66 

bismi'llah ar-Rahman'ar-Rahlm: 28, 74 


Bi'tha: 37 

Bu'ath: 37 

budala': 206 

bukhl: 66 

bulugh: 117, 152 

Buraq: 37 

al-Burda: 6 

burhan: 182 
Burhaniya: 229 
al-Buruj: 74 
buruz: 206 
busr: 6 
Butriya: 182 
Buwayhids: 37 
buyu': 143 
buyutat: 37 

Calendar: 6 
Camel, Battle of: 37 
caravanserai: 144 
Chistiya: 229 

dabba: 60 
dabit: 97 
dabt: 97 

daf al-haraj: 132 
daha': 66 
ad-Dahr: 182,206 
dahrl: 182 
da'I: 37 
daTf: 97 
Dajjal: 6, 60 
dakka: 6 
dalala: 132 
dalalat: 132 
dalil: 132 
daman: 117, 144 
damma: 6 
daniq: 26 
Dar al-Harb: 37 
Dar al-Hijra: 37 
dar al-imara: 37 
Dar al-Islam: 37 
dar ar-rizq: 37 
dar as-sina'a: 37 
Dar as-Sulh: 37 
dara'ib: 144 
darak: 144 
darar: 117 
Darqawa: 229 


Index of Subjects 

datura: 117, 132 

diraya: 74 

daruri: 132 

dirham: 26 

daruriyat: 182 

diwan: 38, 206 

ad-daruriyat al-khamsa: 132 

diya: 117 

darwish: 206 

diya': 38 

daskarat: 37 

Druzes: 183 

Da'ud: 82 


da'wa: 6 

Duha: 7 

Da'wat al-Haqq: 37 

Dukhan: 60, 74 

dawr: 133, 182 

Duldul: 38 

dawsa: 206 

duluk ash-shams: 7 

dayn: 144, 152 

dunya: 66, 206 

Dayr al-Jamajira: 37 


Deen: 6 

devshirme: 38 

efifendi: 38 

dhabiha: 6 


dhanb: 6 

Dhat: 182,206 

fada'il: 66 

Dhat 'Irq: 155 

Fadak: 39 

Dhat al-Jaysh: 38 

fahm: 183 

Dhat an-Nitaqayn: 38 

fahsha' : 66 

dhawq: 206 

fahwa al-khitab: 133 

dhikr: 206 

fahwani: 206 

dhikru'llah: 74, 206 

fajir: 7 

dhilla: 206 

Fajr: 7 

dhimma: 6, 117 

fa'ida: 207 

dhimml: 6 t 117 


dhira': 26 

al-Falak al- Atlas: 207 

dhu l ahd: 3 

fals: 26 

Dhu'l-Hijja: 6 

falsafa: 183 

Dhfi'l-Hulayfa: 38, 155 


Dhu'1-Kifl: 82 

faqih:7, 117 

dhu mahram: 6, 1 17 

faqih an-nafs: 67 

Dhu'n-Nun: 82 

faqlr: 207 

Dhu Nurayn: 38 

faqlranl: 207 

Dhu'I-Qa'da: 6 

faqr: 207 

Dhu Qar: 38 

far': 117,133 

Dhu'l-Qamayn: 82 

fara'id: 117, 152 

dhu'r-rahm: 152 

faragh: 207 

Dhu Tuwa: 38 

faraq: 26 

dihqan: 6, 38 

fard: 7 


fardal-'ayn: 117 

dimar:117, 144 

fard al-kifaya: 117 

Din: 6 

fard: 98, 207 

dinar: 26 

fardiya: 207 



farida: 152 

farq: 207 

farsakh: 26 

ai-FarOq: 39 

fasid: 117,144 

fasila: 74 

fasiq:67, 117 

faskh: 144 

fata: 207 

fatarat: 183 

fatawa: 117 

fath: 207 

fath adh-dharaT: 133 

fatha: 7 

Fatiha: 7, 74 

Fatimids: 39 

fatwa:7, 118 

fay': 118 

fayd: 183, 207 

faylasuf: 183 

fez: 7 

ft amani'llah: 28 

fi sabllillah: 28 

fidya: 118 

Fijar War: 39 

ftkr: 183,207 

fiqh: 7, 118 

al-Fiqh al-Akbar: 183 

fiqh al-aqalllyat: 118 

fiqh al-hadlth: 98 

fiqh an-nawazil: 118 

firasa: 67 

Fir'awn: 82 

Firdaws: 7, 60 

firman: 39 


al-fitan wa ashrat as-sa'a: 61 

fitna: 7, 39 


fitra: 1, 67, 207 

Follower: 7, 98 

fu'ad: 208 

fuqaha': 118 

fuqara': 208 

Furat: 7 

furqan: 67, 74, 208 
fura': 133 
furuq: 144 
furusiya: 7 
fusha: 7 
Fustat: 39 
Futhlya: 183 
futuh: 39, 208 
futuwwa: 67, 208 

al-Ghaba: 39 
ghabn: 144 
ghadd al-basar: 67 
Ghadir al-Khumm: 39 
ghalbat az-zann: 133 
ghafla: 208 
ghall: 39 
Ghallya: 118 
al-Ghanl: 208 
ghanima: 118 
gharad: 118, 183 
ghara'ib: 74 
gharar: 144 
gharat: 139 
gharib: 98 
gharim: 144 
ghanza: 183 
ghasb: 118 
al-Ghashlya: 61, 74 
Ghawth: 208 
Ghayb: 183,208 
ghayba: 183, 208 
ghayr: 208 
ghayrlazim: 144 
ghayr mahsus: 183 
ghayr matlub: 144 
ghayr mu'akkada: 133 
ghazal: 208 
ghazi: 8 

al-ghazw al-fikri: 67 
ghazwa: 8 
ghiba: 67 
ghibta: 67 
ghina: 208 
ghira: 67 


Index of Subjects 

ghiyar: 39 

ghubn: 144 

ghulam: 8 

Ghulat: 183 

ghulul: 118 

ghunna: 74 

ghurba: 208 

al-ghurr al-muhajjalun: 61 

ghurur: 67 

ghusl: 8, 118 


habal al-habala: 144 

Habasha: 39 

Habil and Qabll: 82 

habus: 118 

hadath: 118,208 

hadd: 8, 118 

hadhf: 74 

hadir: 208 

hadith: 8, 98 

hadith an-nafs: 67 

hadith qudsl: 8, 98 

hadr: 74 

hadra: 208 

hady: 155 

hafiz: 74, 98 

hafizun: 63 

hahut: 184, 209 

haja: 133 

Hajar: 82 

Hajar al-Aswad: 8, 155 

hajb: 153 

haji: 133 

hajib: 8,40 

hajis: 209 

Hajj: 8, 155 

Hajjat al-Wada': 155 

hajj: 155 

hajr: 144 

hakam: 118 

hakim: 184 

hal: 209 

halal: 8, 118 

halaqa: 8 

halif: 8 

halqa: 209 

Halvetiyye: 229 

hama: 40 

hamalat al-'Arsh: 61 

Haman: 82 

al-hamdu lillah wa shukru LLUah: 28 

hammam: 8 

hanlf: 8 ? 184 

al-Hanlfiya: 8 

Hanna: 82 

hanut: 8 

haqa'iq: 209 

haqiqa: 209 

haqiqa Muhammadlya: 209 

haqiqi: 133 

al-Haqq: 209 

haqqal-'abd: 133 

haqq Allah: 133 

haqq al-khiyar: 144 

haqq al-yaqln: 209 

haraj: 118 

haram:8, 118 

Haram: 155 

haras: 40 

harba: 8 


harf: 8, 74 

harf wajarh: 74 

hanm: 8 

Harithiya: 184 

al-Harra: 40 

Harraqlya: 229 

Harun: 82 

Al~Haruriya: 40, 184 

Harut and Marut: 61, 82 

al-hasa: 145 

hasad: 67 

hasan:98, 98, 119 

hasana: 8, 67 

al-Hasb: 156 

hasbala: 28 

Hasbaniya: 184 

Hasbuna'llah wa ni'ma'l-wakil: 29 

Hashimite: 40 



hashiya: 8 
Hatlm: 156 
hawa: 67, 184, 209 
hawadith: 184 
hawajim: 209 
hawala: 145 
hawarf: 40 
hawariyyun: 82 
Hawamlm: 74 
Hawazin: 40 
Hawd: 9, 61 
al-HawIya: 61 
hawqala: 29 
Hawwa': 82 
hayaman: 209 
hayba: 209 
haykal: 184 
hayra: 209-210 
hays: 9 
hayula: 184 
al-Hayula al-Kull: 210 
hiba: 119 
hidaya: 9, 184 
hidana: 119 
hija': 9 
hijab:-9, 210 
hijaj: 133 
hijjir: 210 
al-FOjr: 40, 83, 156 
hijra: 9 

hilal: 9, 18 
hill: 119 
hilm: 9, 68 
hima:40, 119 
himma: 210 
hiqqa: 119 
hiniba: 119 

hirfa: 145 

hirs: 210 

hirz: 119 

Hisab: 64 


hiss: 184,210 


hizb: 9 5 74, 210 

Homage of ar-Ridwan: 40 

houri: 61 

Hubal: 40 

hubb: 210 

Hud: 83 

huda: 9, 74 

Al-Hudayblya: 41 

hudhud: 83 

hudud: 9 

hudur: 210 

hudQth: 184,210 

huffaz: 98 

hujaj: 156 

huiJa:119,133 t 184 T 210 

hujjlya: 133 

hujum: 210 

hukm: 133 

hulul: 184, 210 

hunafa': 9 

Hunayn: 41 

hur: 61, 83 


hurras: 41 

hurnya:9 t 211 

huruf al-muqatta'at: 74 

huruf: 9 

husn az-zann: 211 



huwlya: 211 

huzn: 211 

Ibadiyya: 41, 184 
ibaha: 119 

*ibara an-nass: 75, 134 
ibda': 145 


Index of Subjects 


ibn as-sabH: 9 

ibn al-waqtr 21 1 

Ibrahim: 83 

Id: 119 

Id al-Adha: 9, 119 

'Id al-Fitr: 9, 119 

i'dal: 98 

'idda: 119 

idgham: 75 



idraj: 98 

Idris: 83 

idtirab: 98 

idtirar: 120 

idtirari: 134 

ifada: 156 

ifham: 184 

iflas: 145 

ifrad: 156 

Ifriqlya: 41 


iftar: 10, 120 

iftirash: 120 

ihdad: 120 

ihram: 120, 156 

ihraz: 145 

ihsan: 10, 68, 120,211 


ihtida': 184 

ihtikar: 145 

ihtimal: 68 

ihtiyat: 134 

ihya* al-mawat: 120 

Ijab: 145 


ijara: 145 

i'jaz: 75 

ijaza: 10, 98 

ijbar: 120, 184 

ijma': 10, 134 

ijtihad: 10, 134 

ikhfT: 75 

ikhlas: 10, 68, 211 

ikhtilaf: 134 


ikhtisas: 134,211 

ikhtiyar: 184 

ikhwa: 10 

ikhwan: 41 

Ikhwan as-Safa: 185 

Uarah: 120 ' 

iktisab: 185, 187 

ila': 120 


'ilal: 134 

ilhad: 185 


<ilj: 41 

'ilia: 98, 134, 185 

'Illiyfln: 61 


'ilmal-fara'id: 153 

*ilm al-hadlth: 98 

'ilm al-huruf: 185 


'ilm ladunl: 21 1 

'ilm ar-rijal: 98 

'ilm mustalah al-hadlth: 99 

'ilm an-nujum: 185 

'ilm tadwin al-hadlth: 99 

'ilm at-tanjim: 185 

iltifat: 75 

ilya': 41 

Dyas: 83 

ilzam: 145 

Ima': 120, 185 

imala: 75 

imam: 10, 75, 120 

'imama: 10 

Imamiya: 178, 185 

iman: 10, 185 

'imara: 21 1 

imda>: 145 


'Imran: 83 

imsak: 120 

imtithal: 120 




'inan: 145 

inbisat: 211 

'indlya: 211 


Injil: 83 

Inna Iillahi wa inna ilayhi raji'un: 29 

inniya: 212 

inqibad: 212 

inqita 1 : 99 

al-insan al-kabir; 212 

al-insan al-kamil: 212 

insha'llah: 29 

intibah: 212 

intlfa': 145 

intifada: 41 

inzi'aj: 212 

iqala: 145 

iqama: 120 

Iqanr 212 

iqrar: 120, 134 

iqta 1 : 41 

iqtida': 134 

iqtida' an-nass: 75, 134 

iqtisad: 68 

i'rab: 75 

irada: 185,212 


'irban: 146 

irdabb: 26 

'irfan: 212 

irja 1 : 185 

Irraiya': 83 

irsal: 99 

irth: 153 

irtidad: 120 


i'sar: 146 

'Isawians: 212 

'Isawlya: 229 

'Isha': 10, 120 

Ishaq: 83 

ishara: 134, 212 

ishara an-nass: 75, 134 

Ishba f :83 

'ishq: 212 

ishraq: 212 
IshraqI: 185 

ishtimal-as-samma': 120 
Iskandar: 10 
Islam: 10 
ism: 185, 212 
'isma: 185 
Ismail: 83 
Isma'ills: 186 
isnad: 99 

isqat at-tadblr: 212 
Isra': 10 
Isra'iliyat: 75 
Israffl:61 f 83 
Isra'il: 83 
isti'dad: 212 
istidana: 146 
istidara: 212 
istidlal: 134, 185 
istidraj: 212 
istiftah: 121 
istighfar: 29, 212 
istihada: 121 
istihsan: 134 
istijmar: 121 
istikhara: 10 
istikhraj: 134 
istilahat: 212 
istimrar: 121 
istinaf: 75 
istinbat: 135 
istinja 1 : 121 
istinshaq: 121 
istiqama: 68, 212 
istiqrar: 68 
isti'rad: 186 
istishab: 135 
istislah: 135 
istislam: 68, 156 
istisna': 146 
Istisqa': 121 
istita'a: 186 
Ithar: 68, 212 
ithm: 68 


Index of Subjects 

Ithna' 'Ashariya: 186 
i'tibar: 99 
i'tikaf: 121 
itmfan: 212 
i'tiqad: 186 
i'tizal: 186 
'itq: 121 
itlihad: 213 
'iwad: 146 
'iyan: 213 
izar: 10 
izhar: 75 

Jabal an-Nur: 41 
Jabal ar-Rahma: 156 
Jabal Thawr: 41 
jabariya: 10, 186 
Jabarut: 213 
jabr: 186 
Jabriya: 186 
jadhb: 213 
jadha'a: 121 
jadidi: 11 
Ja'fan: 186 
al-jafr: 185 
Jahannam: 11,61,83 
jahbadh: 146 
Jabillya: 11 
Jahlm: 11, 61 
jahl: 68 
Jahmites: 186 
ja'iz: 121 
jalal: 213 
jalbab: 11 
jails: 11 
jalla jalaluh: 29 
Jalut: 83 
jalwa: 213 
Jam 4 : 156 
jam': 75, 121, 213 
jam' al-jam': 213 
jama'a: 11, 121 
jamal: 213 

jami': 11,99 
jam'iya: 213 
jamra: 156 

Jamratal-'Aqaba: 156 
janaba: 121 
janabat: 121 
janaza: 11, 121 
janissary: 41 
Janna: 11,61,83 
jarh wa ta'dfl: 99 
jarlb: 26 
JarMya: 177 
jariya: 11 
Jarrahlya; 230 
Jarudiyya: 186 
jawami': 11 
jawami' al-kalim: 11 
jawaz 'aqli: 135 
jawhar: 187 t 213 
jawrab: 121 
jawwal: 102 
jazaka'llahu khayran: 29 
Jazira: 41 
Jazullya: 230 
jibilla: 213 
Jibra'Il: 11,61,83 
Jibril: 11,61,83 
jihad: ll f 213 
jilala: 213 
jimar: 157 
jinaza: 11, 
jinn: 10, 62 
jins: 146 
Ji'rana:41, 157 
jizya: 11, 121 
ju'al: 146 
jubba: 11 
JudI: 84 
al-Juhfa:41, 157 
julasa 1 : 11 
julus: 121 

Jumada al-Akhira: 1 1 
Jumada al-UIa: 11 
jumal al-fara'id: 75, 135 
jumhur: 135 



jumla: 135 
Jumu'a: 11 
jund: 12 
junub: 121 
juzaf: 146 

Ka'ba: 157 

kablra: 187 

kafa'a: 121 

kafala: 146 

kafan: 121 

kaffara: 122 


kaffl: 146 

kahin: 41 

kalala: 135 

kalam; 187 

kalam Allah: 75 

kallma: 12 

kalimatu'llah: 84 

kalimu'Hah: 84 

kamal: 213 

kaoz: 122 

kapudanpasha: 41 

karaha: 122 

karam: 68 

karamat: 213 

kairama'llahu wajhahu: 29 

karrubiyun: 62 

ka's: 213 

kasb: 187 

kashf: 213 

kasra: 12 

al-Kathib: 62, 214 

katib: 41 

katibun: 62 

kathlf: 214 

katm: 12 

kawn: 187, 214 

Kawthar: 62, 84 

kayfiya: 187 

Kaysaniyya: 187 

khabar: 99, 135 

al-Khadir: 12 

khaft: 75, 135 
khal: 153 
khala: 153 

khalifa: 12, 214 
Khalil: 84 
khalq: 214 
khalq al-Qur'an: 187 
khaluq: 12 
khalwa: 214 
KhalwaGya: 230 
khamisa: 12 
khamr: 214 
khanqah: 214 
al-Khandaq: 41 
kharaj: 146 
Kharijites: 41, 187 
khasla: 187 
khasya: 214 
khass: 76, 135 
khassa: 121, 214 
khati'a: 187 
khatlb: 12 
khatim: 214 
khatima: 188 
khatir: 214 
khatm: 76, 214 
Khawarij: 41, 188 
khawf: 214 
khayal: 214 
Khaybar: 42 
Khayf: 157 
khazin: 12 
Kbazraj: 42 
khazzan: 146 
khedive: 42 
khidhlan: 214 
khidma: 214 
al-Khidr: 12, 214 
khil'a: 12 
khilafa: 12 
khimar: 12 
khirqa: 215 
khitan: 122 


Index of Subjects 

khitba: 122 

khiyana: 122 

khiyar: 146 


khuff: 12, 122 

khul': 122 

Khulafa' ar-Rashidun: 42 

khulta: 146 

khumra: 12 

khums: 12, 122 

Khurasan: 42 

khusuf: 12 

khusuma: 122 

khutba: 12 

khutba an-nikah: 122 

al-Kibrit al-Ahmar: 188, 215 

kinaya: 13 

kira': 146 

kiram katibun: 62 

kismet: 62 

Kisra: 42 

kiswa: 13 

Kitab: 13, 76 

kitaba: 122 

kitabi: 13 

kitman: 13 

kohl: 13 

Kubrawlya: 230 

Kufa: 42 


kufiya: 13 


kufrni'ma: 188 

kufr shirk: 188 

kuhl: 13 

al-kulliyaE al-khams: 188 

kulllyat al-wujud: 188, 215 

kumun: 188 

kun: 215 

kunh: 215 

kunya: 13 

kura: 42 

Kursi: 62 

kusuf: 13 t 122 

al-kutub as-sitta: 99 

la darar wala dirar: 135 

la hawla wa la quwwata ilia blllah: 29 

13 hukm ilia lillah: 188 

lamadhhabi: 135 

Labbayk: 29, 157 

lahd: 13 

Lahut: 215 

lafz: 76 

Lafzlya: 188 

lahn al-khitab: 76, 135 

al-Lat: 43 

laafa: 215 

lawa'ih: 215 

lawami': 215 

lawh: 13, 215 

al-Lawh al-Mahfuz: 13, 62, 215 

Layla: 215 

Laylatal-Bara'a: 13 

layIatu'l-fiiqara T : 215 

Laylat al-Qadr: 84 

lays: 188 

lazim: 146 

Ii'an: 122 

lisan al-hal: 215 

li-wajhTllah: 29 

al-Lizam: 43 

lubb: 215 

luqata: 122 

Luqman: 84 

Lut: 84 

lutf; 188, 215 

al-Ma'ad: 62 

mabda': 188 

mabrur; 122, 155 

madamln: 146 

madarr: 122 

madarra: 136 

madda: 76, 188 

madhhab: 13, 136 

madhmum: 68 

madrasa: 14, 188 

Madyan: 84 

mafhum al-mukhalafa: 76, 136 

mafhura al-muwafaqa: 76 t 136 



mafqud: 122, 153 
mafrud: 122 
mafsada: 136 
magharim: 43, 147 
maghazi: 43 
maghfira: 14 
Maghrib: 14 
mahabba: 215 
mahaU: 188,216 
Mahdi: 62 
mahduf: 76 
mahlya: 188 
mahjub: 153 
mahkama: 14, 122 
mahkum fih: 136 
mahmud: 68 
mahr: 122 
mahram: 143, 122 
mahshar: 62 
mahw: 216 
mahya: 216 
ma'ida: 14 
ma'iya: 216 
Majalla: 122 
majazi: 136, 188 
majdhub: 216 
majhul: 99 
majlis: 14 
majlis al-'aqd: 147 
majmu': 216 
Majus: 43, 84 
majuzl: 136 
makharij: 76 
Makhzum: 43 
makruh: 14, 123 
maktub: 188 
mal: 147 
mala': 14 

al-Mala' al-A'la: 62 
maia'ika: 63 
Malakut: 63, 216 
malama: 216 
malaqih: 147 
malik: 14 

malik al-mawt: 63 

Malik: 63 

ma'luh: 216 

ma'lul: 99 

mamlak: 43 

maranu'a: 123 

ma'na: 136, 216 

manafi': 136 

manajat: 216 

manaqib: 14, 68 

manara: 14 

al-ManasT: 157 

manasik: 157 

manat: 136 

al-Manat: 43 

manazil: 216 

mandub: 14, 136 

manfa'a: 136 

mani': 153 

maniha: 147 

mansukh: 76, 99, 136 

mantiq: 188 

manzil: 216 

al-manzila bayna manzilatayn: 188-189 

maqala: 188 

maqam: 216 

Maqam Ibrahim: 157 

AI-Maqam al-Mahmud: 63 

maqbul: 99 

maqdl: 189 

maqdur: 123 

maqlub: 76, 99 

maqsidr 136 

maqsura: 14 

maqtu': 100 

ma'qul: 189 

ma'qula: 123 

marabout: 216 

marad al-mawt: 153 

marasil: 100 

maratib al-wujud: 189 

marbub: 216 

mardud: 100 

marid: 63 



Index of Subjects 

marfu': 100 

maristan: 14 

marthiya: 14 

ma'ruf: 14, 100, 152 

Marut: 61, 82 

Marwa: 157 

Marwanids: 43 

Maryam: 84 

marzpan: 43 

mas 'a: 157 

ma's-salama: 29 

mas'ala: 123 

masalih mursala: 136 

mash; 123 

masha'llah: 29 

mash'ar: 157 

Mash'ar al-Haram: 157 

mashayikh: 14 

mashhad: 14 

mashhur: 100, 136 

mashi'a: 189 

mashruba: 14 

mashsha'I: 189 

mashura: 14 

al-Masih: 63, 84 

al-Masih ad-Dajjal: 14, 63 

maslhi: 14 

masjid: 14 

Masjid-al-Aqsa: 14 

Masjid al-Haram: 157 

Masjid al-Jama'a: 14 

Masjid an-NabawI: 157 

Masjid al-Qiblatayn: 157 

Masjid at-Taqwa: 158 

maskilt 'anhu: 136 

maslaha: 137 

masnun: 15, 123 

ma'sum: 15 

mathal: 76 

Mathani: 76 

mam: 100 

ma'truh: 153 

matruh: 100 

matruk: 100 

Matundite: 43, 181, 189, 194 

ma' Ada: 15 
rnawadda: 216 
mawall: 123 
mawani':43, 100, 153 
mawaqit: 158 
mawarith: 153 
mawat: 123 
mawazln: 63 
mawdu': 100 
maw'iza: 15 
mawjudat: 189 
mawla: 43, 123 
mawlana: 29 
Mawlawlya: 230 
mawlid: 15 
mawqif: 63,158 
mawquf: 100 
mawsim: 216 
mawt: 15 
mawtin: 216 
may sir: 15 
mayyit: 123 
mazalim: 123 
Mevleviya: 230 
Mihna: 43, 189 
mihrab: 15 
Mihrajan: 15 
Mijanna: 158 
Mika'Il: 63, 84 
mikhsara: 15 
milk tamm: 147 
milla: 43 

millat Ibrahim: 189 
Mina: 158 
minbar: 15 
minhaj: 189 
mlgat 158 
mir: 15 
Mi'raj: 15 
mirath: 153 
mirbad: 15 
misbaha: 216 
miskin: 15 
al-Misran: 43 



miswak: 15 
mithal: 189, 217 
mlthaq: 15, 217 
mithl: 189 
mithti: 147 
mithqal: 26 
mi'un: 76 

Mizab ar-Rahma* 158 
mizan: 15 
moussem: 217 
mu'addib: 15 
mu'adhdhin: 15 
mu'akkada: 137 
mu'allafa al-qulub: 123 
mu'allal: 100 
mu'allaq: 100 
mu'allim: 15 
mu'amalat: 137 
mu'an'an: 100 
mu'anaqa: 76 
mu'aridat: 137 
Mu'awwidhatan: 76 
mubah: 123 
mubalagha: 76 
mubarak: 15 
mubashshirat: 15- 
mubayyida: 44 
mubham: 77 
mubln: 137 
mubiqat: 1S9 
mudabbar: 123 
mu'dal: 100 
mudallas: 100 
mudaraba: 147 
mudarib: 147 
mudarcis: 189 
mudd: 26 
mudhakara: 217 
mudhakarat al-hadlth: 100 
mudraj: 100 
mudtarib: 100 
mufallas: 147 
Mufassal: 77 
mufassir: 77 
mufawada: 147 

Mufawwida: 189 
mufrad: 101 
mufsida: 123 
mufti: 15, 123 
mugharasa: 147 
muhadara: 217 
muhadatha: 217 
muhaddith: 101 
Muhajiriin: 44 
Muhakkima: 190 
muhal 'alayhi: 147 
muhal lahu: 147 
muhallil: 123 
rauhaqala: 147 
muhaqqiq: 190, 217 
Muharram: 16 
muhasaba: 68, 217 
Muhassab: 158 
Muhassar: 158 
muhawara: 190 
muhdath: 190 
muhdathat: 190 
rauhdith: 123 
muhibb: 217 
muhil: 147 
muhkam: 77, 137 
rauhrim: 158 
muhsan: 123 
muhsana: 123 
muhsar: 158 
muhsin: 68, 217 
muhtasib: 147 
mujaddid: 16, 190 
mujahada: 217 
mujahid: 16 
muj'am: 101 
mujarrad: 217 
mujazziz: 16 
Mujbira: 190 
mu'jiza: 16, 77 
mujmal: 137 
mujtahid: 137 
mukallaf: 124 
mukashafa: 217 
mukatab: 124 


Index of Subjects 

mukataba: 101 

mukaththirun: 101 

mukhabarat: 16 

mukhadara: 147 

mukhlas: 217 

mukhlis: 217 


mukhtar: 147 

Mukhtasar: 148 

muktis: 148 

mula'im: 138 

mulamasa: 148 

mulay: 16 

mulhid: 190 

mulhidat: 190 

Mulk: 190,217 

Multazam: 158 

mumayyiz: 153 

mu'min: 16 

mumkinat: 190 

munabadha: 148 

munafiq: 16 

munajat: 217 


munasaba: 138 

munasib: 138 

munawwara: 16 


munazalat: 217 

mundabita: 138 

munkar: 68, 101 

Munkar and Naktr: 63 

munqati': 101 

muqabala: 217 

muqabala wa-tashih: 101, 138 

muqaddam: 217 

muqaddar: 77 

muqaddima: 138 

muqallid: 138 

muqaraba: 148 

muqarin: 138 

muqarrabun: 63 

muqasama: 124 

muqatila: 16 

muqayyad; 138 

Muqawqis: 44 
muqtadf: 124 
mura'at al-khilaf: 138 
murabaha: 148 
Murabitun: 44 
murabit: 218 
muraqaba: 218 
muraqqa'a: 218 
murid; 218 
Muiji'ites: 190 
mtirith: 153 
mursal: 101, 138 
mursalun: 77 
murshid: 218 
murtadd: 124 
muru'a: 68, 218 
Musa: 84 

Musabbib al-asbab: 190 
musad'afih: 16 
musafir: 218 
musahhaf: 101 
musalla: 16, 124 
musalsal: 101 
musamara: 218 
musannaf: 101 
musaqa: 148 
musawama: 148 
musawwida: 44 
Mushabbiha: 190 
mushahada: 218 
mushaf: 16,77 
musharaka: 148 
mushawara: 138 
mushawir: 138 
mushkil: 101, 138 
mushrik: 16 
mushtaq: 218 
mushtarak: 101 t 138 
mushtari: 148 
musi: 153 
Muslim: 16 
musnad: 101 
musnid: 102 
raustadrak: 124 



mustahabb: 124 

mustakhraj: 102 

musta'man: 124 

mustahilat: 190 

mustalah al-hadlth: 102 

mut'a: 124 

muta'ahhib: 218 

mutaba'a: 102 

mutabarikDn: 218 

mutafahhish: 68 

mutafaqqih: 138 

al-Mu'tafika: 84 

mutahayyiz: 218 

mutakallim: 190 

mu'takif: 124 

al-Mutalaththimun: 44 

mu'talif: 102 


mutashabih: 77 

mutatawi'a: 16 

mutawatir: 102, 138 

mutawwif: 158 

Mu'tazilite: 179, 189, 190, 193, 194 

mudaq: 138 

muttaqun: 16, 218 

muttasil: 102 

mutun: 102 

muwafat: 191 

MuwahMdun: 44 

muwallad: 44 

muwahhid: 16 

muwaqqat: 148 

muwashshaha: 44 

muzabana: 148 

muzara'a: 148 

muzayada: 148 

Muzdalifa: 158 

nabi: 16 

nabidh: 16 

nadhr: 124 

nadiha: 124 

nafaqa: 124 

nafas ar-Rahman: 219 

nafi: 124 

nafila: 17, 124 
naflcha: 63 
Nafr: 158 
nafs: 191, 219 
nafth: 68, 219 
nahd: 124 
nahr: 124, 158 
Nahrawan: 44 
nahw: 17 
nahy: 17, 124 
na'ib: 219 
Najaf: 44 
najasha: 124 
najash: 148 
NajashI: 44 
Najd: 44 
Najdlya: 181 
najis: 124 
najsh: 148 
najwa: 219 
nakira: 219 
narna': 148 
namaz: 17 
namlma: 69 
Namira: 158 
Namus: 191 
naqd: 102 
naqdan: 148 
naqib: 45 

naql: 175, 102, 138 
Naqshbandiya: 230 
Nar: 17, 63, 84 
nas: 17 
nasab: 17, 45 
Nasara: 17 
nasl'a: 148 
Nasibi: 191 
naslha: 69 
nasik: 219 
nasikh: 102, 138 
naskh: 77, 138 
nass:77, 102, 138 
na't: 191 


Index of Subjects 

naw': 125 
nawadir: 17 
nawafil: 125 
Nawasib: 191 
NawrQz: 17 
nazar: 125, 138, 191 
nazara: 139, 191 
nazil: 102 
nazila: 139 
nazir: 139, 191 
nazzar: 139, 191 
Negus: 45 
nifaq: 69 
nifas: 125 
Nihawand: 45 
nikah: 17 

niqab: 17 
nisa': 17 
nisab: 125 
nisf: 77 
nisyan: 219 
niyaba: 125 
niyya: 17 
nubuwa: 17 
Nuh: 84 
nujaba': 219 
nujum: 77 
nuqaba': 220 
nur: 17 

Nurbakhshlya: 230 
nushiiz: 125 
nusk: 125 
nusub: 45 
nusuk: 125 
nusus: 102, 139 
nuzul: 77 
nuzzar; 139 

parah: 77 
pasha: 17 
payambar: 17 
pir: 220 
purdah: 17 

qabd: 125, 220 
qabr: 17 
qabul: 148 
qard: 149 
qada': 125 192 
qada' bi't-ta'addi: 139 
qadar: 191 
Qadariya: 191 
qadhf: 125 
qadi: 17, 125 
qadi al-jama'a: 45 
qadl al-qudat: 17 
qadib: 17 
qadlm: 191, 220 
Qadiriya: 230 
Qadislya: 45 
qafiz: 26 
qahr: 220 
Qahtan: 45 
qa'idiin: 17 
qa'if: 17 
qa'im: 191 
qal'a: 17 
qalam: 17 
qalandar: 220 
qalansuwa: 17 
qalb: 220 
qalib: 18 
qamar: IS 
qamls: 18 
qanitun: 220 
qanun: 139 
qar': 125 

qara'in al-ahwal: 125 
Qaramita: 191 
qarar: 220 
qard: 149 
al-Qari'a: 63, 77 
qarin: 158 
Qarmatians: 192 
Qarn: 45, 158, 159 
Qarun: 84 
qasaba: 27 
qasama: 125 



qasida: IS, 220 

qasim: 125 

qasr: IS 

qass : 45 

Qaswa' : 45 

qat'I: 139 

qattat: 18 

qawa'id: 139 

Qawm: 220 

Qawwali: 220 

Qayrawan: 45 

Qaysar: 45 

qaysariya: 149 

qibla: 18, 125 

qidam: 192, 220 

qilada: 159 

qina'a: 69 

qinn: 126 

qintar: 27 

qira'a: 77, 93-94 

qirad: 149 

qiram: 18 

qiran: 159 

qirat: 29 

qisas 126 

qisas al-anbiya': 45, 78 

qissa: 45 

qist; 27 

Qltmlr: 84 

qiyam: 126 

Qiyama: 18,63,84 

qiyas: 139 

Quba: 46 

qubba: 200 

Qubba as-SaKhra: 18 

quda: 18 

qudra: 125, 192 

al-Quds: 18 

qulub: 220 

qunut; 126 

Qur'an: 18 

Quraysh: 46 

qurb: 220 

qurban: 18 

qurra': 78 

quru': 126 
qussam: 126 
Qutb: 220 
qu'ud: 126 
quwwa: 139, 192 

ra'aya: 18 

rabad: 46 

Rabb: 18, 220 

rabb al-mal: 149 

rabbana wa laka'1-hamd: 29 

Rabr al-Awwal: 18 

Rabl 1 ath-Thanl: 18 

rada': 126 

rada*a: 126 

radd: 153 

radiya'llahu 4 anha: 30 

radiya'llahu l anhu: 30 

radiya'llahu f anhum: 230 

raf al-haraj: 139 

Rafidites: 192 

raghba: 220 

rahhala: 102 

rahib: 18 

rahimahu'llah: 30 

rahma: 69 

rahamut: 220 

Rahmanlya: 230 

rahba: 220 

rahn: 149 

raj 'a: 192 

raja': 221 

Rajab: 18 

rajaz: 18 

rajih: 139 

rajm: 126 

rajul: 221 

rak'a(t): 19, 126 

rama: 149 

Ramadan: 19 

rami: 159 

rami: 159 

rams: 221 

ramz: 192, 221 

raqa'iq: 19, 221 


Index of Subjects 

ar-Raqlm: 84 
raqlqa: 221 
raqqad: 149 
Rasa'il: 192 
Rashidun: 46 
rasm: 78 
ar-Rass: 84 
rasul: 19 
RasuTullah: 19 
ratib: 126 
rawadif: 46 
Rawafid: 192 
Rawda: 19 
rawi: 78, 102 
ra'y: 139 
rayb: 69 
rayn: 221 
Rayyan: 63 
riba: 149 
ribat: 46, 221 
ribh: 149 
rida; 221 
rida': 19,69 
ridda: 126 
Ridda: 46 
Ridwan: 40, 64 
Rifa'iya: 230 
rifq: 126 
rihla: 102 
rijal: 102, 139, 221 
rikaz: 126 
riqaq: 102 
risala: 19, 102, 192 

riwaya: 78, 102, 139 
riyada: 69, 221 
rizq: 46, 221 
roza: 19 
ru': 221 
rub': 78 
ruba'iyat: 221 
mbiibtya: 221 
rubut: 221 

ar-Ruh al-Amin: 84 
Run al-Qudus: 78, 84 
ruhani: 221 
ruhanlya: 221 
Rukhkh: 221 
rukhsa: 126, 139, 149 
rukn: 19, 126 
al-rukn al-yamanl: 19 
ruku': 126 
ar-Riim: 46 
ruqba: 126 
mqya: 19 
rushd: 153 
ru 'una: 222 
ru'ya: 19, 222 

sa*: 27 
as-Sa'a: 60 
sa'ada: 69 
Sab 1 al-Mathani: 78 
Sab* at-Tiwal: 78 
Saba: 85 
sabab: 140, 192 
Sabab al-Awwal: 192 
sabablya: 192 
sabiqa: 46 
sabiqun: 64 
sabirfln: 222 
Sabi'un: 85 
Sab'Iya: 192 
sabr: 69, 222 
sa'dan: 19 
sadaq: 126 
sadaqa: 19 

sadd adh-dhara'i*: 140 
sadl: 126 
saduq: 103 
saduq yahim: 103 
Safa: 159 
Safar: 19 
safar: 222 
Safavids: 46 
sagbira: 192 
Sahaba: 19, 103 
SahabI: 20, 103 



sahib: 20, 143 

Sahib al-Hut: 85 

sahib ash-shimal: 64 

sahib ash-shurta: 46 

sahib as-Sur: 64 

sahib al-yamin: 64 

sahlfa: 20, 103 

sahih: 103, 140, 149 

Sahihan: 103 

sahq: 222 

sahr: 69, 222 

sahur: 20 

sahw: 127, 222 

sa'iba: 127 

sa'ifa: 46 

as-Sa'Ir: 64 


sajda: 127 . 

sajjada: 20 

Sakb: 46 

saklna: 69, 78, 222 

sakk: 149 

salab: 127 

Salaf: 20 

Salafi: 20 

salah: 69 

salam: 149 

as-salamu 'alaykum: 30 

sala(t): 20 

as-salat 'ala'n-Nabi: 222 

Salat al-Haja: 127 

Salat al-Khawf: 127 

salb: 193 

Salih: 85 

salih: 20, 222 

salihat: 69 

salik: 222 

Salimiya: 231 

Saljuqs: 47 

salla'Ilahu 'alayhi wa sallam: 30 

Salsabll: 64, 85 

sama 5 : 20 

sama': 103, 140, 222 

Samad: 222 

saini' Allahu liman hamidah: 30 

as-Samiri: 85 

sanad: 140 

sanjak: 46 


Saqar: 64, 85 

saqlfa: 20 

Sara: 85 

sardar: 46 

sarf: 149 

SaiXf: 46 

sariqa: 127 

sariya: 20 

satr: 222 

Sawad: 47 

sawafi: 127 

sawiq: 20 

sawm: 20 

sa'y: 159 

sayyahun: 222 

sayyid: 20 

sayyiduna: 30 

Seljuqs: 47 

Seven Sleepers: 85 

Sha'ban: 20 

Shabibiya: 193 

shadhdh: 78, 103 


shaf : 127 

shafa'a: 64 

shafi': 149 

shahada: 20, 127 

shahada az-zur: 127 

shahid: 21, 78, 103,127 

shahid: 21, 103 

shahwa: 69 

shajarat al-kawn: 222 

shakk: 69, 193 

Sham: 47 

Shama'il: 21 

shaqq: 21 

sharaf al-'ata':47 

sharh: 21 

Shari'a: 21 

sharif: 21 

sharika: 149-150 


Index of Subjects 

shart: 127, 150 

shathlyat: 223 

Shattariya: 231 

shawahid: 78, 103 

Shawwal: 21 

shawq: 223 

shaykh: 21, 223 

Shaykh al-Akbar: 223 

Shaykh al-Islam: 21 

shay tan: 21 

ShTa: 21 


shigar: 127 

shirk: 21, 223 

shirka: 150 

Shu'ayb: 85 

shuf a: 127, 150 

shuhud: 223 

shukr: 69, 223 

shura: 21,47, 127 

shurb: 223 

shuriid: 223 

shurta: 21, 127 

shurfiq: 21 

shurut: 103, 150 

Shu'tiblya: 47 

shuyfikh: 21, 223 

siddiq: 69, 223 

sidq: 69, 223 

as-sidrwa't-taqslm: 140 

Sidrat al-Muntaha: 64, 85 

sifa: 193, 223 

sifa hukmiya: 140 

Siffin: 47 

slgha: 150 


Sijilmasa: 47 

Sijjin: 64 

sikka: 47 

sila: 78 

silsila: 223 

simsima: 223 

sipahi: 47 

siqlabl: 47 

sira: 47 

Sirat: 64 

as-sirat al-mustaqlm: 21 

sirq: 127 

sirr: 223 


siyam: 20 

siwak: 21 

siyaq: 78 

siyar: 69, 140 

siyasa: 48, 140 

Subh: 21 

subha: 223 

subhanallah: 30 

subhanallah wa ta'ala: 30 

Suffa: 22 

Sufrites: 193 

suftaja: 150 

Sufyanids: 48 

suhba: 223 

Sunrawardiya: 231 

suhuf: 22, 78 

sujud: 127 

sukr: 223 

sukfin: 22, 223 

Sulayman: 85 

sulh: 22, 127 

sultan: 22, 127 

suluk: 223 

sunan: 22, 128 

Sunna: 22, 128 

Sunni: 22 

suq: 48, 150 

sura: 78 

sutra: 128 

suwar: 78 

Syr Darya: 48 

ta'a: 22 
ta'abbud: 140 
ta'addl: 22, 128 
ta'ala: 30 
ta'arud: 128, 140 
at-ta'atl: 150 
ta'awwudh: 30 
taba"ud: 193 



tabaddul: 224 

Tabaqat: 22, 48 

tabaraka'llah: 30 

tabdll: 128 

tabl'a: 69, 193 

Tabi'un: 22, 103 

Tabi'u't-Tabi'In: 22, 103 

Tabut: 85 

Tabuk: 48 

tadamun: 150 

tadblr: 69, 128 

ta'dlb: 69 

ta'dfya: 128, 140 

tadlls: 103 

tadmin: 150 

tadwir: 78 

tafadul: 193 

tafakkur: 224 

taflis: 150 

tafia: 193 

tajriba: 193 

tafrid: 224 

tafriqa: 207, 224 

tafslr: 22, 79 

tafwfd: 224 

taghut: 22 

taghylr: 128 

tahaddl: 79 

tahajjud: 22, 128 

tahakkum: 224 

tahalli: 224 

tahara: 22, 128 

tahdhib: 69 

tahir: 128 

tablyat al-masjid: 128 

tahlil: 128 

tahmld: 30 

tahnlk: 23 

tahqiq: 224 

tahqiq al-manat: 140 


tahslnlya: 140 

tahsll: 128 

Ta'if: 48 

Ta'ifa: 224 

tajalll: 224 
tajdld al-khalq: 224 
tajriba: 193 
tajrid: 224 
tajzi'a: 140 
tajwid: 79 
takafu': 150 
takaful: 150 
takalif: 140 
takattuf: 128 
takblr: 30, 128 
takblr al-ihram: 128 
takfir: 23, 193 
takhfif: 140 
takhalll: 224 
takhlls: 224 
taklya: 224 
takhmln: 193 
takhrij: 140 
takhrij al-manat: 140 
takhsis: 140 
takhyTr: 140 
takllf: 128 

takllfmalayutaq: 128 
takmlll: 141 
takwin: 193 
talaq: 23, 128 
talaqql: 224 
talaqql as-sila': 150 
Talas: 48 
talbfs: 224 
talbTya: 30, 159 
talfiq: 141 
talfis: 150 
ta'ffl: 141 
talqln: 23 
Talut: 85 
talwln: 224 
tamattu 1 : 23, 159 
tamjfd: 30 
tamkin: 225 
tarns: 225 
tanasukh: 193 


Index of Subjects 

tanazzulat: 225 
tanfidh: 129, 151 
Tan'Im: 48, 159 
tanjlm: 79 

tanqlh al-manat: 141 
tanzih: 193,225 
taqallub: 225 
taqdim wa ta'khlr: 79 
taqdlr: 79 t 141 
taqdiri: 141 
taqlya: 23, 48, 193 
taqlid: 141, 159 
taqrib: 225 
taqsir: 151 
taqwa: 23,69,225 
tarabbus: 129 
taraqqi: 225 
tarawlh: 129 
tarblya: 69 
tard: 141 
tardlya: 30 
ta'rid: 79 
ta'rikh: 23 
tariq: 79 
Tariqa: 225 
tarjl': 129 
tarjih: 141 
tarjuman: 23 
tark al-huzuz; 129 
tark at-tark: 225 
tartlb: 79, 129, 141 
tartll: 79 
tarwlya: 159 
tasarruf: 131,225 
tasawwuf: 31,225 
tasbih: 30, 225 
tashahhud: 129 
tashbih: 193, 225 
tashdid: 23 
tashif: 103 
tashlh: 153 
tashil: 129 
tashmit: 3 1 

Tasnim: 64 
tashriq: 159 
tasllm: 129 
tatawwu 4 :23, 129 
tatbiq: 79 
ta'til: 23, 193 
tawadu 1 : 69, 226 
tawaf: 159 
tawajjuhat: 226 
tawajud: 226 
tawakkul: 70, 226 
tawali 4 : 226 
tawallud: 193 
tawaqquf: 129, 193 
tawarruk: 129 
tawassul: 23 
tawatur: 103, 141 
tawba: 23, 226 
tawfiq: 23, 226 
ta'wil: 80, 141, 194,226 
tawkld: 80 
tawlld: 194 
tawliya: 151 
tawql'a: 48 
Tawra: 85 
tawriya: 80 
tawsfa: 141 
Tawwabun: 48 
tayammum: 23, 129 
ta'yln: 141 
taylasan: 23 
taynuz: 153 
Tayyiba: 48 
ta'zlr: 129 
ta'ziya: 23 
tazkiya: 70, 129 
tekke: 226 
thabat: 70 
Thablr: 48 
thabit: 104 
thaman: 151 
thamaniyya: 151 
Thamud: 85 



thanawiya: 194 
tha'r: 23 
thand: 24 
thawab: 24 
thayyiba: 24 
thiqa thabit: 104 
thubut: 194 
thughur: 48 
thumn: 80 
tibb: 24 
Tijanlya: 231 
tijara: 151 
tilawa: 80 
timar: 49 
at-Tiwal: 80 
tu'am: 24 
Tuba: 64, 85 
Tubba': 85 
tulaqa': 48 
at-Tur: 85 
turuq: 104, 226 
turuq an-nazar: 141 
Tuwa: 85 

l ubuda: 226 
'ubudlya: 226 
l Qd: 226 
al-'Udwa: 49 
Uhud: 49 
ujrat al-mithl: 151 
l Ukaz: 49 
'ulama': 24 
ulu'l-amr: 24 
ulu'l-'azm: 86 
ulfihlya: 194 
4 ulum: 24 

*ulum al-Qur'an: 80 
umana': 24 
Umayyads: 49 
Umm al-Kitab: 62 
Umm al-Mu'rainin: 24 
Umm al-Qur'an: 24, 80 
Umm al-Qura: 76 

umm walad: 24, 129 
Umma: 24 
ummi: 24 
'umra: 24 
uns: 70, 226 
'uqlya: 27 
'uqubat: 129 
'uqud: 151 

al-'uqud al-arba'a: 194 
'urbiin: 151 
"urf: 141, 151 
'urud: 151 
'ushr: 151 
usul: 24, 141 
usul ad-din: 24 
usul al-fiqh: 141 
al-usul al-khamsa: 194 
usul al-Qanun: 141 
usull: 48, 141 
Uwaysi : 226 
'Uzayr: 86 
'uzla: 226 
al-'Uzza: 49 

wa'd: 194 

al-wa £ d wa'1-wa'id: 194 
WadTl-Qura: 49 
wadl'a: 151 
waft': 70, 141 
wahdaulya: 194, 226 
wahdat ash-shuhud: 226 
wahdat al-wujud: 226 
Wahhabi: 49 
wahidiya: 226 
wahm: 226 
wahy: 24, 80 
wahsha: 227 
wa'Id: 194 
Wa'Idlya: 194 
wajd: 227 
wajh: 80 

wajib: 24, 129 
walah: 227 
wakala: 151 


Index of Subjects 

wakil: 129, 151 
wair: 24, 130 
walad: 227 
wall: 180, 227 
wallma: 24 
waqf: 80 t 130 
waqfa: 227 
waqi'a: 227 
Waqifiya: 194 
waqt: 227 
. wara': 70, 227 
warehouses: 151 . 
warid: 227 
warith: 153 
wars: 25 

wasa'it:194 > 227 
wasaya: 153 
wasi: 154 
wasil: 70 
waslla: 25 
Wasit: 50 
waslya: 154 
wasl: 227 
wasm: 227 
wasq: 27 
waswas: 25, 227 
watad: 227 
wazlfa: 228 
wazir: 50 
wijada: 104 
wijdan: 228 
wilaya: 3, 228 
wird: 228 
wisal: 25 
witr: 130 
wudu':25, 130 
wufud: 50 
wujud: 194, 228 
wuquf: 159, 195 
wusul: 228 

Yafith: 86 
Yahudi: 25 
Yahya: 86 
Yajiij waMajuj: 64 

Yalamlaraa: 50, 160 
yamln: 130 
yaqin: 228 
Ya^qflb: 86 
Yarmuk: 50 
al-Yasa': 86 
yaslr: 25 
Yathrib: 50 
yatTm: 25 

Yawm al-Ba'th: 64 
Yawm ad-Din: 64 
Yawm al-Fasl: 64 
Yawm al-Hisab: 64 
Yawm al-Qiyama: 65 
Yemeni Corner: 160 
Yunus: 86 
Yusha': 86 
Yusuf: 86 

Zabanlya: 65, 86 
Zabur: 86 
zahid: 228 
zahir: 80, 142 
Zahiriya: 177 
zTir. 160 
Zakariyya: 86 
zakat: 130 
zakat al-fitr: 130 
zalim: 25 
zaman: 195,228 
Zamzam: 160 
zandaqa: 195 
Zanj: 50 
zann: 195, 228 
Zaqqum: 65 
zawa'id: 228 
zawahir: 80, 142 
zawlya: 228 
Zaydites: 50, 195 
zihar: 130 
zina: 130 
zindlq: 195 
ziyada: 80 
ziyadatu thiqa: 104 



ziyara: 160, 228 
zuhd: 228 
zuhhad: 228 
Zulaykha: 86 
zulm: 25 
zunnar: 50 
zuyuf; 151 


Index of People and Books 

Abraha: 32 

'Abdullah ibn 'Abbas: 87 

'Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak: 235 

'Abdu'l-Ghanlan-NabuUsi: 235 

'Abdu'l-Karlm al-JilI: 233, 235 

'Abdu'l-Qadir al-Jillrii: 176, 232, 235 

'Abdu'l-Qahiral-Baghdadi: 196 

'Abdu'r-RazzaqibnHumam: 105, 113 

'Abdu'l-Wahid ibn Zayd: 236 

Abu *Ali ad-Daqqaq: 236 

Abu Bakr: 32 

AbuDawud: 105, 114 

Abu Hanlfa: 166 

Abu'l-Hudhayl: 196 

Abu Madyan: 236 

Abu Muslim: 33 

Abu Nu'aym al-Isfahanl: 105, 232 

Abu Sa'Id al-Kharraz: 236 

Abu Talib al-Makld: 234, 236 

Abu Ya'la: 105 

AbuYusuf: 167,169 

Ahkam al-Qur'an: 92 

al-Ahkam as-Sultaniya: 173 

Ahmad al-BadawI: 236 

Ahmad Bamba: 236 

Ahmad ibn an-Naqlb: 170, 174 

Ahmad ibn Hanbal: 105, 112, 174 

al-Akhdari: 165 

al-'AlawI: 237 

'All: 37 

'Ali ibn 'Isa ar-Rummanl: 87 

A t malal-A'lam:56 

Ansab al-Ashrafi 56 

al-Ansari: 237 

Anwar at-Tanzil: 92 

Arba'Tn: 112 

al-Ash'an: 35, 181, 196 

Asma': 38 

'Attar: 233, 234, 237 

Aveiroes: 163. 165, 198-199 

Avicenna: 199 
'Awarifal-Ma'arif. 232 
al-Awza*I: 177 

Bada'V as-Sana'i': 168 
Al-Baghawl: 87, 105, 12, 170 
al-Baghdadi: 196 
al-Baqillanl: 87, 197 
al-Baydawl: 87, 92 
al-Bayhaql: 106, 115, 170, 173 
al-Bazzar: 106 
Bidayat al-Mujtahid: 165 
al-Bidaya wa'n-Nihaya: 56 
Bishr ibn al-Harith: 237 
al-Bistaml: 237 
al-Bukhan:106, 113 
al-Busiri: 237 

Chistl: 238 

Dala'ilal-Khayrat: 232 
ad-Daqqaq: 236 
ad-Daraqutnl: 106,114 
ad-Dardlr: 238 
ad-Darimi: 106, 114 
ad-DarqawI: 238 
ad-DasQql: 238 
Data Ganj Bakhsh: 233, 240 
Da'ud ibn 'AH: 177 
adh-Dhahabl: 51, 58, 106 
Dhu'n-Nun al-Misri: 238 
ad-Dinawari: 51 
Diraribn 'Amr: 197 
ad-Dusuqi: 238 

al-Farabl: 197 

Fatawa 'AlamgTrlya: 169 


Fath al- 'Aziz 

Fath al-'Aztz: 173 
Fathal-Ban: 112 
Al-Fath ar-Rabbam: 232 
Fatima: 5, 39 
Fudayl ibn 'Iyad: 23S-239 
Fusmj al-Hikam: 232 
Futuh al-Buldan\ 56 
Futuh al-Ghayb: 232 
Fwfwfr M/jr w<a 'l-Maghrib: 56 
Futuhat al-Makkiyya: 232 

Gharib Nawaz: 238 
Ghaylan ad-Dimishql: 197 
al-Ghazall: 171, 173, 174, 198, 232, 
233, 239 
al-Ghunya: 176 

Habib al-'Ajami: 239 

Hafiz: 239 

Hafsa: 39 

al-Hakim: 107, 113 

al-Hakim at-TirmidhT: 232, 239 

al-HaUaj: 239 

Hamza: 40 

Hamza al-Isfahanl: 58 

al-Harith al-Muhasibl: 239 

Haqa'iq at-Tafsir; 92 

al-Hasan al-Basri: 240 

al-Hasan ibn Ziyad: 167 

Hashiya Radd al-Muhtar: 169 

al-Hidaya: 169 

Hikam: 232 

Hilyat al-Awliya'; 232 

Hizb al-Eahr: 232 

Hizb al-Barr: 232 

Hizb an-Nasr: 232 

al-Hujwiri: 233,240 

Ibn 'Abbad ar-Rundl: 240 
Ibn 'Abdi'1-Barr: 107, 161 
Ibn'Abdal-Hakam:51 f 56 
Ibn 'Abdu's-Salam: 171 
Ibn 'Abidin: 167, 169 
Ibn AbT Dunya: 240 
Ibn AM Shayba: 107 

Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani: 161, 166 

Ibn *Adi: 107 

Ibn 'Ajlba: 240 

Ibn al-'Arabi: 92, 162, 232, 234, 240 

Ibn al-'Arif: 240-241 

Ibn 'Asakir: 58, 107 


Ibn 'Ata'llah: 232, 233, 241 


Ibn al-Athlr: 52, 57 

Ibn 'Atiyya: 88 

Ibn Babuya: 107 


Ibn Daqiq al-'Id: 241 

Ibn al-Farid: 233, 241 

Ibn Habib: 162 

IbnHajaral-'Asqalani: 107, 112, 115 

Ibn Hajar al-Haythaml: 171, 174 

IbnHanbal: 105,112,174 

IbnHazm: 177,198 

IbnHibban: 108,113 

Ibn Hisham: 52, 57 

Ibn Idhari: 52, 57 

Ibn Ishaq: 52, 57 

Ibn al-Jawzf: 174-175 

IbnJuzayy:88,93, 162, 166 

Ibn Kathir: 52, 56, 88, 93, 108 

Ibn Khafif: 241 

Ibn Khaldun: 52, 57 

Ibn Khallikan: 53, 58 

Ibn al-KhaCb: 56 

Ibn Khayyat: 53 

Ibn Khuzayma: 108 

Ibn Ma' in: 108 

IbnMajah: 108,114 

Ibn Mashlsh: 232, 241 

Ibn al-Mawwaz: 162, 165 

Ibn Miskawayh: 58 

Ibn al-Mubarak: 241 


Ibn al-Qasim: 162, 165 

Ibn al-Qasiy: 241 

Ibn al-Qayyim: 175, 176 

Ibn Qudama: 175, 176 

Ibn Qutayba: 56 


Index of People and Books 

Ibn Rajab: 175 

IbnRushd: 163, 165, 198-199 

Ibn Sa'd: 54, 58, 109 

Ibnas-Salah: 108, 171 

Ibn Salim: 242 

Ibn Sina: 199 

Ibn Taghnblrdf: 53, 57, 59 

Ibn Taymiyya: 174 



Ibrahim ibn Adham: 242 

Ibrahim al-Khawwas: 242 

Ihya' 'Ulum ad-DTn: 232 

al-'Ijli: 199 

I'lam al-MuwaqqVm: 176 

Al-lmama wa's-Siyasa: 56 

al-Insan al-Kamil: 233 

al-Iqtisad: 185 

al-Irshad: 185 

Ishaq ibn Rahawayh: 108 

al-Itqan: 93 

'Iyad, QadT: 164 

Jahm ibn Safwan: 199 
al-Jahshiyari: 53 
aUalalayn: 92, 93 
Jami: 238, 242 

Jami' li-Ahkam al-Qur'an: 92 
Jami' al-Bayan: 93 
al-Jami' as-Saghir: 112 
Jami' of at-Tirmidhi: 112, 115 
al-Jazuli: 232, 242 
al-Jilani 176, 232, 235 
al-Jili: 233, 235 
al-Jubba'I: 199 
al-JuUabl: 233, 240 
al-Junayd: 242 
al-Juwaynl: 171, 173,185,200 

al-Ka'bl: 200 
al-Kalabadhl: 234, 243 
al-Kamil fi't-TarTkh: 51 
al-Kashani: 168 
Kashfal-Mahjub: 233 
al-Kashshaf: 92 

Khadlja: 41 

Khalll: 164, 165 

al-Khallal: 176 

Khamriyya: 233 

al-Kharraz: 243 

al-Khassaf: 167 

Khatm al-Awliya': 233 

al-Khayyat: 200 

al-Khiraqi: 176 

al-Kindl: 200 

Kitab al-Bayan al-Mughrib: 51 

Kitab al-Kharaj: 169 

Kitab al-Luma': 233 

Kitab al-Masalik wa'l-Mamalik: 57 

Kitab as-Suluk: 51 

Ma' al-'Aynayn al-Qalqaml: 243 

al-Mabsut: 169 

al-Mada'inl: 53 

Mafatih al-Ghayb: 92 

al-Maghazi: 53 

al-Maghili: 243 

al-Mahalli: 88, 93 

al-Majriti: 200 

al-Makkl: 234 t 243 

Malik b. Dinar: 243 

Malik ibn Anas: 109, 113, 161, 166 

Mantiq at-Tayr: 233 

Maqalat al-Islamiyyin: 189 

al-Maqqari: 53, 57 

al-Maqrizi: 53, 57 

al-Marghlnani: 167, 169 

Ma'ruf al-Karktu: 243-244 

Masabih as-Sunna: 112 

al-Mas'udl: 54, 57 

MathnawT: 233 

al-Matundi: 185, 188, 189, 194, 201 

al-Mawaqif. 233 

al-Mawardl: 172, 173 

al-Mawwaztya: 165 

Miftah al-Falah: 233 

Minhaj at-Talibin: 112 

Mishkat al-Masabih: 112 

MVyar. 165 

al-Mizzi: 109 



al-Mudawwana: 165 
al-Mughril: 176 

Muhammad ibn al-Hasan: 168, 169 
Muhammad ibn Sa'd: 54, 58, 109 
al-Muhasibi: 239 
al-Mukhtalita: 165 
Mukhtasar al-Akhdari: 1 65 
Al-Mukhtasarfil-Fiqh: 176 
Mukhtasar KhaM: 165 
al-Munqidh min ad-Dalai. 233 
al-Muqaddima: 51 
Muqatil ibn Sulayman: 88 
Muruj adh-Dhahab: 44 
al-Musannaf. 113 
Musaylima: 44 
Muslim: 109, 114 
Musnad Ahmad: 112 
Musnad of at-Tayalisi: 1 13 
aLMustasfa: 173 
al-Mustadrak: 113 
al-Mustakhraja: 166 
al-Muwatta 1 : 113,115,166 
al-Muzanl 172 
Muzaffer; 244 

an-NabulusI: 235 

Nafahat al~Uns: 233 

Nafh m-Tib\ 57 

Najh al-Balagha: 191 

Naqshband: 244 

an-Nasa'I: 109, 114 

an-Nasafi: 167 

Nasr ibn Muzahim: 54, 59 

an-NawawT: 109, 113, 172, 173, 244 

an-Nazzam: 201 

an-Niffari: 233, 244 

Nihaya al-Matlab: 173 

Nizaml: 244 

Nizamu'd-DIn Awliya': 244 

Nurbaksb, Muhammad; 245 

an-Nuri: 245 

al-Qaraft: 164 
al-Qawa'if al-Fiqhlya: 166 
al-Qudun: 167 

al-Qurtubl: 89, 92 
al-Qushayri: 234, 245 
Qut al-Quliib: 234 

Rabr ibn Sulayman: 172 
Rabi'a al-'AdawIya: 245 
ar-Rafi'I: 172, 173 
ar-Ramhurmuzi: 110 
ar-Razi: 89, 92, 201 
ar-Rifa'I: 245 
Risalai 166, 234 
Riyad as-Sallkin: 113 
ar-RumT: 233, 245-246 

Sa'dl: 246 

Sahih ai-Bukhzn: 113, 115 
SahTh ibn Hibban: 113 
'SahJh Muslim: 114,115 
Sahl ibn 'Abdullah: 246 
Sahnun: 164, 165 
as-Salat al-Mashishiyya: 234 
Sana'I: 246 
as-Sanusl: 246 
as-Sarakhsi: 168, 169 
Sarias-Saqati: 246 
as-Sarraj: 233, 247 
as-Sawl: 92 
ash-Shadhili: 233, 247 
ash-ShafTl: 170, 174 
ash-Shahrastanl: 202 
Shah Wali'ullah: 247 
Shamil ad-Daghestanl: 247 
Shamsi Tabriz!: 247 
Shaqiq al-Balkhl: 248 
ash-Sha'ranl: 248 
Sharh as-Sunna: 173 
ash-Shatibl: 164 
ash-Shakwani: 110 
ash-Shaybani: 168, 169 
ash-Shibli: 248 
ash-ShlfazI: 174 
STra\ 57 
Sirhindl: 248 
as-Subki: 172 
as-Suhrawardf: 202, 248 


Index of People and Books 

as-Sulami: 89, 92, 234, 248 
Sulayman al-Khawwas: 248 
Sunan of AbuDawud: 114, 115 
Sunan of ad-Daraqutnl: 1 14 
'Sunan of ad-Darimi: 1 14 
Sunan of Ibn Majah: 114, 114 
Sunan of al-Nasa'i: 114, 115 
as-Sunan al-Kubra: 115 
as-Suyutl: 54, 88, 89, 93, 112, 115 

Ta'arruf. 234 

TabaqSt Ibn Sa'd: 58 

Tabaqat as-Sufiyya: 234 

at-Tabaranl: 110 

at-f abari: 54, 58, 90, 93, 177 

at-TabrizI: 112 

Tadhkirat al-Awliya': 234 

at-Tadill: 248-249 

Tadrlb ar-Rawi: 1 15 

Tafslr al-Jalalayn: 92, 93 

Tafslr al-Quf an: 93 

Tafslr at-Tabart: 93 

at-Taftazani: 202 

at-Tahawr: 16$ 

Tahdhib al-Ahkam: 115 

Tajdrib al-Umam: 58 

at-Tanbih: 174 

at-Targhib wa't-Tarhlb: 115 

Ta'rikh al-Islam\ 58 


Ta'rikh MadTnat Dimashq: 58 

Ta'rikh ai-Tabarv. 58 

Ta'rikh al-Umam: 5& 

Tarjuman al-Ashwaq: 34 

at-Tashlh 93 

Tawus ibn Kaysan: 90 

at-TayalisI: 110,113 

ath-Tha'alibr: 90 

at-Tijanl: 249 

at-Tirmidhl: 111,112 

at-Tinnidhi (al-Haklm): 232, 239 

Tuhfa al-Muhtaj: 174 

at-TusI: 115, 178 

at-Tustan: 246 

Ubayy ibn Ka'b: 90 
'Umar ibn al-Khattab: 39, 49 
'Umdat as-salik: 174 
al-Umm: 11 A 
al-'Utbi: 164, 166 
al-'Utbiyya: 166 
'Utfiman ibn 'Affan: 39, 49 
'Uthman ibn FQdl: 164, 249 
'Uways al-Barawl: 249 

Wafayat al-A 'yan: 58 
al-Wahidl: 91 
al-WajTz: 174 
WakT ibn al-Jarrah: 249 
al-WansharisI: 165 
Waq< 'at Siffin: 59 
al-Waqidl: 55 
Wasilibn'Ata , :202 
al-Wasitt: 249 

al-Ya'qiibl: 55 
Yaqut: 55 

az-Zahirafi Muluk: 59 
az-Zamakhshan: 91, 92 
Zarruq, Ahmad: 249 
Zufar ibn al-Hudhayl: 168 


if IIKf 

LI HI ILlJ'xBlCti 



Aisha Abdurrahman at-Tarjumana Bewtey is erne of todays most prolific transla- 
tors of classical Arabic works into English. Aisha Bcwlcy not only understands 
Arabic but she is also aware of the basic meanings and nature of the teachings and 
history of Islam Her know ledge is bom of experience aryj direct transmission, not 
merely academic theory and learning by rote For more than twenty-five years she 
has been concerned with making the contents of many classical works in Arabic 
more accessible to English -speaking readers for the first time, including At- 
Mu*atia' of Imam Malik and AshShifu of Qadi lyad Oik of the additional 
fruits of Aisha Bcwfcy's work - n simply cannot be described a* a product or side- 
effect - is this book. 


This book is a repository of Islamic information, know ledge and wisdom, which 
not only the general reader but also both student and teacher alike will find Indis- 
pensable. As well as having its own Alphabetical Index, the main body of the book 
Lt divided into several Key Sections including General and Historical Terms, the 
Quran, To/sir. Hadtth, Fiqh, Kalam and Sufism. As well as presenting a key 
vocabulary of relevant terminology, each section also provides details of key texts, 
authors and people. This makes it possible for readers to go straight to a particu- 
lar field or topic without having to pick their way through material not directly rel- 
evant to their enquiry, as well as pointing them in the likely direction of further 
and more detailed research. Although knowledge is an ocean without a shore, the 
key terminology in this concise yet complete wvjrk is bound to assist any genuine 
seeker to navigate a sure and steady course, inshv'ltah. 

\v\r\i i^ 

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